Johnson, 28, was released by the Buccaneers just one year after inking a five-year, $43.75MM contract to help solidify Tampa Bay’s defensive line. Like most Bucs, Johnson had an underwhelming 2014 campaign — he logged just four sacks, and Pro Football Focus graded him as the league’s 53rd-best 4-3 defensive end, out of 59 qualified players (subscription required).
The Vikings were linked to Johnson early on in his free agent process thanks to the connection between the defensive end and head coach Mike Zimmer. On Wednesday, a source told Chris Tomasson of the Pioneer Press that the two are still close and that Johnson nearly went to Minnesota last year as a result.
The Bengals, Johnson’s old team, have also expressed interest.