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David Johnson shows receiving skills

Posted by Darren Urban on August 20, 2015 – 9:30 am

Jerraud Powers had joked about it with coach Bruce Arians on Monday — the day Chris Johnson arrived — and then repeated it again Tuesday. He was asked how Johnson’s signing would impact the young running backs, and the veteran cornerback was blunt. “They’re all back practicing.” Whether that’s truly why the hamstrings are healed can be debated, but here is one truth — rookie David Johnson has looked pretty good as a receiver out of the backfield the last couple of days.

Yes, Johnson is a running back. He still has to show he can carry the ball, and he talked Wednesday about learning a very big playbook. But while he cautioned that hamstrings can be “tricky,” Johnson has run well the past couple of practices. And catching the ball, he has looked every bit the player Bruce Arians said he’d be in that role. In drills coming out of the backfield, no one has really been able to cover him, making one think about the matchup issues Johnson can provide. Now, we wait to see what it looks like in a game.

“I’ve been waiting since January, since the draft, to prove what I’m worth,” Johnson said.

Arians likes to use his running backs as receivers, and this isn’t just about throwing swing passes to a guy — which is why it will be interesting to see how Chris Johnson adapts to the offense. Andre Ellington runs out of the slot and has shown good hands (remember, Arians has said he thinks Ellington could have been a wideout in this league) and that is something Johnson has already shown. There is no fighting the ball when it comes to him.

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19 Responses to “David Johnson shows receiving skills”

  1. By JosEPh on Aug 20, 2015 | Reply

    Saw David play against Western Illinois Univ. several times over the past 4 years in Macomb, IL.. Can’t wait to see him on the field for the Cards. Hope he’s starting when the Cards come to St.Louis Dec 6th. Gonna be a Fun game to see live. Go David! Go Cards!!!

  2. By Andy Kw on Aug 20, 2015 | Reply

    Hey Darren,
    Do you think the Cardinals could potentially bring back Tommy Kelly?

  3. By Darren Urban on Aug 20, 2015 | Reply

    Andy Kw —

    RE: Kelly

    Not right now.

  4. By Scott H on Aug 20, 2015 | Reply

    Given how this looked as camp started, I’m thrilled to hear that Johnson is practicing at all! To hear that he looks good doing ANYTHING is just gravy. Good to hear!

    As stated, I am glad that CJ is here right now but DAVID is the Johnson that I really want to see shine for this team this year.

    Certainly not out of the question that we end up with a Johnson & Johnson backfield this year. I love Ellington ( he can be SUCH a dynamic player ) but until I see him sustain his health over a whole season ( and by sustain, I mean he can’t be as limited as he was last year before they finally pulled the plug )….I will continue to have questions.

    Heck, of the three, CHRIS Johnson has the best track record for staying healthy.

    And I really wish one of these guys weren’t named Johnson and I didn’t need to keep stressing the first name of which ever one I’m talking about!

  5. By clssylssy on Aug 20, 2015 | Reply

    Arians may like to use his RBs as receivers but nobody else in this league would have chosen Ellington to be a wideout because he is to small and fragile…imagine him trying to stop somebody like Sherman! AE’s had difficulty staying healthy to handle his RB assignment and certainly will never be a Marshawn Lynch! BA also likes to use his receivers more like TEs, just hope he doesn’t expect some of the little guys to put their face in the fire! At the moment, our concerns should be on the stability of our 0-line and front seven, defensive play calling, otherwise we”ll have taken a few steps back from where we were last season. It will be interesting to see how we stand up against the Chargers who looked pretty good last week, and if anything got “fixed” in this weeks practices.

  6. By Jimbowan on Aug 20, 2015 | Reply

    Good man David. Get healthy and show this league what baller you can be. Love this guy. Great back with a great back story. He has the same lunch pail mentality the Cards have.

  7. By Kathy on Aug 20, 2015 | Reply

    As a UNI alum and season ticket holder I watched all of David’s home games and a few road games. There were times I would just watch and say “WOW”! This kid is amazing and has the ability to come up with the big play when you need it most! Rooting hard for DJ and Xavier Williams!

  8. By Crow on Aug 20, 2015 | Reply

    sad to hear bout peters but next man up

  9. By Scott H on Aug 20, 2015 | Reply

    Kathy –

    A valuable perspective, for sure. But there is a difference between “WOW” at the college level and “WOW” at the pro level – where EVERYBODY is much bigger and much faster than the competition at the college level.

    That said, I hope DJ will make us ALL go WOW in the years to come. 🙂

  10. By Dr. G. on Aug 20, 2015 | Reply

    Looking forward to David Johnson becoming our best RB. He has all the skills necessary, and the size to try to endure… The hammy thing I hope is just a temp delay to test BA’s mettle…love the guy… I want this to be our best pick… Go for it, my man…

  11. By JC_AZ on Aug 20, 2015 | Reply

    How deos Watford look playing for Iupati?

  12. By Darren Urban on Aug 20, 2015 | Reply

    JC —

    RE: Iupati

    Larsen is playing LG right now.

  13. By cards62 on Aug 20, 2015 | Reply

    This David Johnson looks like a beast. Read a lot about him, but never watched him in college. He carried the ball a lot in college so this means he must have been healthy. They say he blocks very well, runs well but too upright, and is a very good receiver. My prediction is we will see more and more of David Johnson as the season goes along, but I am fine with using all 3 backs. I just hope we can open some holes for them, but I have to tell you I think our running game is going to be ugly for the first 3 to 4 games, but hey it was ugly for what 14 games last year

    Go Cards

  14. By don on Aug 20, 2015 | Reply

    was hoping we would get DJ. when neither of the premier RB’s fell to us in the first round . really excited about his potential . really love this draft class . Keim. co are knocking it out of the park with this 1 !!
    hope we look back at this as a historic draft class for this franchise🙂
    GO CARDS !!!!!

  15. By don on Aug 20, 2015 | Reply

    everyone in a Chief’s uniform , looked uncoverable . while Chase Daniels was on the field saturday . so I’m wondering who’s trying to cover DJ ? i have to say . it was an inauspicious premier for our new DC ….

  16. By shawn on Aug 20, 2015 | Reply

    So proud to say i knew david in high school. all the stories of his attitude and all around mentality are true. an absolute role model who always had a smile on his face. David took our garbage football team to state his senior year, but iowa wouldn’t even give him a scholarship. he’d have gone in the first round if he played in the big 10

  17. By Big Ken on Aug 22, 2015 | Reply

    Good to hear, David Johnson was starting to worry me.

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