Kerryon Johnson

Eagles’ Kerryon Johnson Takes Pay Cut

Kerryon Johnson has a new contract. After the Eagles claimed him off of waivers, the former Lions running back agreed to a pay cut (via Dave Zangaro of NBC Sports). 

Johnson was set to earn about $1.4MM in the final year of his rookie contract. Now, with the restructure, he’ll make the veteran’s minimum of $920K. Meanwhile, the Eagles have an extra $446K to work with this year. His deal includes $0 in guaranteed cash, so there’s no risk involved for the Birds.

Johnson showed some promise as a rookie, averaging 5.4 yards per tote in 2018 and scoring four touchdowns in ten games. However, knee injuries sidetracked him from that point forward. In 2019, he hit the IR twice. Johnson didn’t miss time last year, but he lost ground to D’Andre Swift and Adrian Peterson.

Now, Johnson will be tasked with finding a spot in a crowded RB room. That means practicing/competing with the likes of Miles Sanders, Boston Scott, Jordan Howard, and Kenny Gainwell. The Eagles should be fairly set in the backfield, especially with the former second-round pick in the fold. They’ve also got a little bit of cash to upgrade elsewhere — about $8.3MM, per the NFLPA’s records.

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Dolphins Tried To Claim Kerryon Johnson

The Dolphins submitted a claim for Kerryon Johnson, according to Field Yates of ESPN.com (on Twitter). Unfortunately for them, the Eagles also submitted a claim for the former Lions running back, and they had the higher priority.

Miami has already invested a bit in the RB group this year, adding Malcolm Brown in free agency and drafting Gerrid Doaks in the seventh round. Meanwhile, they already have Myles Gaskin, Salvon Ahmed, Patrick Laird, and Jordan Scarlett on the roster. Their move for Johnson indicates that they could still explore backfield options between now and the fall.

Johnson, a 2018 second-round pick, was been slowed by injuries in his early seasons. However, he returned to play in 16 games last year. The Eagles hope that he can stay on the field and get back to his rookie form, when he averaged 5.4 yards per carry and scored four touchdowns, up until the first of two serious knee injuries.

Instead of taking his talents to South Beach, Johnson joins an Eagles group that includes Miles Sanders, Boston Scott, Jordan Howard, and fifth-round rookie Kenneth Gainwell.

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Eagles Claim RB Kerryon Johnson

Kerryon Johnson will not make it to free agency. The Eagles submitted a successful waiver claim Friday and will bring in the three-year veteran running back, Adam Schefter of ESPN.com tweets.

The Lions waived the 2018 second-round pick this week. Johnson, who has battled injuries as a pro but returned to play in 16 games last season, has one year left on his rookie deal.

Sitting sixth on the waiver wire, Philadelphia has Miles Sanders entrenched as its starter. The team also rosters Boston Scott and used a fifth-round pick on Kenneth Gainwell last week. An Auburn alum who went off the 2018 draft board 43rd overall, Johnson fell out of favor in Detroit. The Eagles also have a new coaching staff, however, and will see if Johnson can play a complementary role.

Although Johnson joined Mikel Leshoure and Ameer Abdullah as 2010s Lions second-round backs that fell short of expectations, he did show some promise as a rookie. Johnson averaged 5.4 yards per carry in 2018 and scored four touchdowns in 10 games. However, the first of his knee injuries sidetracked that season. Johnson suffered a knee injury in 2019 as well. The 2018 knee malady did not require an IR stay, but Johnson went on IR twice in 2019.

Interestingly, the 23-year-old back did not miss any time in 2020. But the Lions had moved in a different direction. They drafted D’Andre Swift in Round 2 and signed Adrian Peterson. Both played in front of Johnson, who logged 52 carries for 181 yards during an off-radar season.

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Lions To Waive RB Kerryon Johnson

Kerryon Johnson‘s stint with the Lions has come to an end. Detroit is waiving the running back, according to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport (via Twitter).

The 2018 second-round pick was a major part of the Lions offense as a rookie, compiling 854 yards from scrimmage and four scores. He saw a similar workload in 2019 before succumbing to a knee injury after only eight games (seven starts).

When Johnson returned from injury in 2020, he was no longer atop the depth chart. The team seemed to priortize 2020 second-round running back D’Andre Swift over Johnson, with the third-year pro also having to battle Adrian Peterson for snaps. Ultimately, Johnson finished this past season with only 368 yards from scrimmage in 16 games, although he did earn praise for his pass-blocking ability.

While Peterson won’t be back next season, the team did add former Packers running back Jamaal Williams on a two-year deal. The team also added Jermar Jefferson in the seventh round of the draft, meaning Johnson wasn’t even guaranteed a spot as a third running back.

Now, the 23-year-old Johnson will hit the waiver wire, and there’s a solid chance he’s scooped up by another squad. Johnson still has a year left on his rookie contract, with his contract counting $2MM against the cap. The Lions save about $1.3MM with this move.

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Lions Activate Kerryon Johnson Off IR

The Lions are set to have an opportunity to see their top running back in action two more times this season. They are activating Kerryon Johnson from IR in advance of their Week 16 game in Denver, Field Yates of ESPN.com tweets.

Johnson has been out since Week 7 with a knee injury. He returned to practice nearly three weeks ago and will be back on Detroit’s 53-man roster. With Johnson having spent much of his career on IR, these two lower-stakes (for the Lions) games will take on greater importance for the second-year running back.

This move appears to come with some risk, especially in a lost season. The 2018 second-round pick missed six games as a rookie with a knee injury. Johnson, who’s played in six games this season, remains the Lions’ top backfield investment and figures to go into 2020 as the team’s starter. But given the Auburn alum’s injury issues, these two games could help determine whether the team opts to add backfield competition next year.

This season has obviously not gone well for Johnson, whose yards-per-carry average dropped to 3.3 from the 5.4-yard mark he posted as a rookie. He’s totaled 434 yards from scrimmage in 2019. The Lions have seen considerable backfield turnover this season and have recently used second-year back Bo Scarbrough as their starter.

To make room on their 53-man roster, the Lions placed linebacker Christian Jones on IR. They also promoted defensive end Jonathan Wynn from their practice squad. Jones joins fellow starting linebacker Jarrad Davis on IR.

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Lions’ Kerryon Johnson Designated To Return

Lions running back Kerryon Johnson has been designated to return from injured reserve, head coach Matt Patricia announced on Wednesday. Johnson will be eligible to play in Week 16 against the Broncos, though it’s not guaranteed that he’ll be activated. 

The Lions are mathematically eliminated from the playoffs at 3-8-1, so the decision to play Johnson won’t be an easy one to make. The running back would surely like to see his first action since the sixth game of the season, but the Lions won’t want to risk further injury to one of their top skill players.

If nothing else, the move allows Johnson to practice with the club, starting today. Johnson, 22, was averaging just 3.3 yards per carry prior to the injury, but impressed in a limited sample as a rookie. In 2018, Johnson finished with 641 rushing yards on 118 attempts, good for a 5.4 yards per carry average. And, in Week 3 of that season, he snapped the Lions’ streak of 70 games without a 100-yard rusher.

The Lions, without Johnson in the lineup, will finish the year against the Vikings, Bucs, Broncos, and Packers. If the season ended today, they’d own the No. 6 overall pick.

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Lions Place Kerryon Johnson On IR

Kerryon Johnson won’t see the field for a while. The running back has been placed on injured reserve, according to head coach Matt Patricia.

Johnson was forced out of the first quarter of Sunday’s game with a right knee injury and further testing revealed that he’ll need surgery to help jumpstart his recovery. Per league rules, Johnson can return after eight missed weeks. Patricia says that’s the plan, though that’ll hinge on the pace of Johnson’s recovery. That’ll also hinge on the Lions’ place in the playoff chase, though Patricia did not vocalize that part.

 

Johnson’s early career has been defined by potential and bad injury luck. Last year, he missed six games with a left knee injury, though he showed some promising flashes.

In six games this year, Johnson ran for 308 yards and two touchdowns. Through the air, he added another score and 126 receiving yards off of nine catches.

With the 2018 second-round pick out of action, the Lions will likely turn to Ty Johnson and J.D. McKissic. There’s also No. 3 RB Tra Carson on the active roster and Paul Perkins may be considered for a promotion.

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Kerryon Johnson To Miss “Some Time”

Lions running back Kerryon Johnson was injured during the first quarter of yesterday’s game, and it sounds like he’s about to miss a more than three quarters of play. ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports (via Twitter) that Johnson is set to miss “some time,” with the running back currently designated as week-to-week.

Johnson missed the final six games of his rookie campaign with a knee injury. Even if this current ailment isn’t particularly serious, it would make sense for the Lions to be relatively cautious with the 2018 second-rounder.

The running back looked the part of a three-down back last season, and while his sophomore campaign has been a bit underwhelming, he’s still proven to be an important part of Detroit’s offense. Through six games, Johnson has 308 rushing yards and two scores on 92 carries. He’s added another touchdown and 126 receiving yards on nine receptions.

With Johnson out, the Lions will likely turn to Ty Johnson and J.D. McKissic (they’re also rostering Paul Perkins on their practice squad, as well as recent-addition Tra Carson on their active roster). While it’s just my speculation, the Lions could turn to veteran running back C.J. Anderson, who played the first two games of the season with Detroit. The veteran worked out for the Raiders earlier today.

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Injury Updates: Brees, Ryan, Apple, Slay, Johnson

The latest injury updates from around the league:

  • Drew Brees has missed five games now, and it looks like the Saints quarterback is nearing a return. Brees said he will return to practice this week and that he hopes to play in Week 8 against the Cardinals, according to Mike Triplett of ESPN.com (Twitter link). That being said Brees told Triplett he’s still taking a “we’ll see” approach, so it’s far from guaranteed he suits up against Arizona. Still, he’s clearly going to be back soon. Teddy Bridgewater has gone 5-0 in his absence, so Brees’ thumb injury might end up turning out to be a blessing in disguise if it leaves him more fresh down the stretch. New Orleans picked up a big win on the road against Chicago Sunday, and their defense is playing lights out.
  • Speaking of NFC South quarterbacks, Matt Ryan left the Falcons’ loss to the Rams early with an ankle injury. Ryan was in a lot of pain and in a boot after the game, but a source said “the team does not believe the injury is serious,” per Adam Schefter of ESPN.com (Twitter link). Atlanta’s season is circling the drain as they sit at 1-6 and Dan Quinn could be fired any week, so it’s quite possible they’re cautious with Ryan. It wouldn’t be a surprise at all if Matt Schaub is under center next week against Seattle.
  • Cornerback Eli Apple left the Saints’ win over the Bears with a non-contact knee injury, which understandably sparked a lot of concern. The “initial belief” is that Apple hyperextended his knee, according to Nick Underhill of The Athletic (Twitter link). It’s unclear how serious the injury is and he could certainly still miss some time, but fortunately it doesn’t sound like an ACL tear. Apple has started every game for New Orleans this season, and is a key part of their defense. This one will be important to monitor.
  • Star cornerback Darius Slay and running back Kerryon Johnson both left and were ruled out of the Lions’ loss to the Vikings. There hasn’t been much of an update on either, but Slay’s was a hamstring and Johnson’s was a knee. Slay missed one game with a hamstring injury earlier this year, so it sounds like he aggravated that. Johnson missed six games with a knee injury last season, so this is obviously troubling. We’ll keep you posted as soon as we hear more.

Lions Place RB Kerryon Johnson On IR

Kerryon Johnson‘s season is over. The Lions will place the standout running back on injured reserve with a knee injury, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (on Twitter). 

The Lions are mathematically eliminated from the playoffs, so there’s little sense in pushing Johnson on to the field when he’s less than 100% anyway. The severity of Johnson’s injury is not yet known, but he is expected to make a full recovery in the offseason.

The rookie turned in a quality season, even as the Lions slumped. He finishes with 641 rushing yards on 118 attempts, which is good for a 5.4 yards per carry average. And, in Week 3, he snapped the Lions’ streak of 70 games without a 100-yard rusher.

The Lions will wrap their season against the Vikings and Packers. With Johnson out, they’ll continue to use LeGarrette Glount, Theo Riddick, and Zach Zenner in the backfield.

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