STRENGTHS - Despite only playing the position for two seasons, Johnson's athleticism enables him to protect the QB's blindside surprisingly well. With rare foot quickness he is able to slide out to the corner easily to stop speed rusher's initial burst. His ability to block with base helps him to slide easily side to side to adjust to quick pass rush moves at the contact point. Although he does not punch aggressively in pass pro, he flashes the ability to get his hands on pass rusher quickly, can "get a good fit" and is able to lock-out and tie up pass rusher. When he keeps his feet moving after contact he is outstanding at maintaining pass blocks. His flexibility enables him to sink his hips so that he can re-set and anchor with surprising ease. While he does not get movement on straight ahead run blocks, he does a good job of making contact with DL, gets good hand positioning and can tie up and seal man to the side of the play. He is consistently productive on side/angle in-line run blocks. Blessed with excellent playing speed, he can pull and get out in front to lead block on outside runs with ease and has the body control and agility to adjust and block a moving target with ease. Quick through the LOS, Johnson is a consistently productive blocker on the second level.
WEAKNESSES - Johnson lacks the ideal bulk and playing strength to consistently hold ground vs power rushers. Despite long arms and good technique, Johnson does not aggressively punch in pass pro and too often allows pass rusher access to his chest. He has a bad habit of stopping his feet after making contact when pass blocking edge rushers and ends up crossing-over and chasing man around the corner too often.While he is a competitive run blocker and makes contact with DL fast, he needs to run block with better leverage in order to play stronger at the POA on run blocks.
SUMMARY - Johnson is one of the more unique offensive linemen to enter the NFL as a high draft pick. Having played quarterback in high school and during his first season at junior college, Johnson was tried as a tight end and defensive end before being moved to offensive tackle in the spring of 2011. To say that he blossomed quickly would be an understatement as he has better footwork and use of hands (Excluding his lack of an aggressive punch) than many tackles who have played the position their entire careers. Overall, Johnson is not as good of a blocker right now as Luke Joeckel or Eric Fisher, but based on what I saw at the Senior Bowl, I expect that in time he will be right there with both of them challenging to be a Pro Bowl tackle. Although his on field production at Oklahoma may warrant more of a second round grade, when combined with his length, athleticism and amazing development in such a short time playing the position, I would be surprised if he makes it past the 15th pick of the first round.