Bengals coaches have long been intrigued by Fred Johnson’s youth and his 6’7” frame that carries 326 pounds. The problem has been finding an appropriate role for him. They may have done that against the Houston Texans.
Johnson, who has been moved around all over the line, got to start at left tackle and had a few eye-popping plays. In the video below, he absolutely levels linebacker Tyrell Adams (#50). He then seals off defensive end Charles Omenihu (#94), springing running back Samaje Perine for a 14-yard gain in the first quarter.
Johnson was also arguably the biggest factor in Perine’s 46-yard touchdown run early in the third quarter, as he shoves defensive tackle Ross Blacklock (#90) at the line of scrimmage, causing the 290 pounds man to lose his balance and become a non-factor. Johnson then immediately takes on poor Adams again, which frees Perine into the open field, where he spins and takes it to the house.
Fred Johnson blasts open this hole on outside zone. Samaje Perine runs through contact and then puts on the jets for a big TD. Xavier Sua-Filo also with the nice reach and seal on the 4i. pic.twitter.com/zm2W7CLZJz— Sans (@bengals_sans) December 29, 2020
This, of course, shouldn’t discourage the Bengals from drafting or signing another clear-cut starter at tackle in the offseason. Rather, they should know that they have a long-term project with a high ceiling with a high ceiling and potential quality backup in Johnson for years to come.
We debated whether the Bengals’ late turnaround might provide the team with confidence and limit how aggressive they are in the offseason in the video below:
You can also listen on iTunes and using the player below:
Johnson came on our show back in July, and he was an absolute delight. Make sure to check out that interview below: