Tyler Johnson 2020 NFL Draft Profile

Tyler Johnson
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Tyler Johnson Overview

Position: Wide receiver
Height: 6’1″
Weight: 206 pounds
School: Minnesota

Tyler Johnson 2020 NFL Draft Profile

Tyler Johnson made a lasting impact on the University of Minnesota during his four-year career. He leaves after becoming the school’s all-time leader in receiving yards (3,305) and touchdown receptions (33). Not bad for a high school quarterback.

Before arriving on campus, Johnson played quarterback and defensive back at Minneapolis North High School. He saved his best for his senior season, passing for 2,602 yards and 36 touchdowns. That alone would have gotten college scouts’ attention, but Johnson added 1,100 yards and 20 more touchdowns on the ground as North High School made an appearance in the state championship. Johnson’s talents carried over to the basketball court as he helped North win the state championship later his senior year.

One of the top recruits in the country, Johnson stayed home and became a Gopher. After transitioning to receiver, Johnson still played in all 13 games as a true freshman. His on-field impact was minimal, but he still managed to pick up 14 catches for 141 yards and a touchdown. As a sophomore, Johnson broke into the starting lineup, starting the team’s first ten games before an injury sidelined him for the final two. Despite missing the final couple of games, Johnson still led the team with 35 receptions, 677 yards, and seven touchdowns, earning All-Big Ten Honorable Mention honors.

It was as a junior that Johnson began to take the Big Ten by storm. His 78 catches, 1,169 yards, and 13 scores earned him All-Big Ten First-Team honors. Johnson returned for his final season to again be named All-Big Ten First-Team setting school records with 86 receptions for 1,318 yards and 13 touchdowns. He capped off his collegiate career with an MVP performance in the Outback Bowl against Auburn. His 12 catches for 204 yards were career-highs and included two touchdowns as the Gophers won 31-24.

Strengths

  • Strong and elusive in the open field;
  • Great hands;
  • Makes tough, contested catches;
  • Thick build;
  • Uses physicality and savvy to get open and find zones;
  • A willing blocker;
  • Great production.

Weaknesses

  • Not a speedster;
  • Even though he can get open, his route running is far from perfect;
  • Sometimes loses concentration and that’s when he drops routine passes;
  • Not explosive in and out of breaks;
  • Without an exceptional trait that stands out among other receivers, may get buried some in a receiver-heavy draft.

NFL Comparison: A.J. Brown

Teams With Need at Position: Washington Redskins, New York Giants, New York Jets, Las Vegas Raiders, Denver Broncos, Philadelphia Eagles, Minnesota Vikings, Baltimore Ravens, Green Bay Packers, San Fransisco 49ers

Projection: Fourth to fifth round

Bottom Line on Tyler Johnson

Not many receivers enter the 2020 draft with as much production as Johnson. With only four seasons as a receiver, his skills are far from a finished product. He will more likely be targeted by a team that runs a more traditional offensive scheme but don’t be surprised if a team with a high-octane offense targets him and makes him a changeup out of the slot. Johnson will likely start his NFL career off near the bottom of the depth chart, but he stands a chance to work his way into the lineup because of his natural instincts and ability in the open field. While he may never be a top 15 receiver in the NFL, his ceiling is attainable and is probably a No. 2 role.

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