|ADP||Rec||Rec Yds||Rec TDs||100||Fum|
What You Need to Know:
-Johnson underwent sports hernia surgery last offseason.
-He missed summer practice time with a foot injury and early, in-season practices with a toe.
-Johnson missed 1 full game in the regular season (Week 6, back) and part of another with a concussion.
-Despite the dings, Johnson finished as the PPR WR21 on the back of 144 targets (6th-most league-wide).
-Johnson scored a decent 7 TDs, but the 5’10 WR wasn’t a major red zone weapon. He saw 13.2% of Pittsburgh’s red zone targets — 4th most on the team.
-There was room for more, as Johnson struggled with drops in 2020. His 13.2% drop rate shot up from a mark of 4.8% in 2019. He dropped a pass in 11 of 16 games (postseason included).
-He benefited from Pittsburgh’s pass-heavy approach. The team finished 2nd in pass rate; 1st in pass attempts.
-Johnson also saw Ben Roethlisberger stay healthy after playing in only 2 games in 2019 (elbow surgery). He returns for his 18th season and retains plenty of injury risk.
-JuJu Smith-Schuster re-signed over the offseason; Chase Claypool and Eric Ebron return.
-The big change is in the backfield with Round 1 pick Najee Harris. His 3-down, workhorse potential should have this unit favoring a more balanced approach.
-The Steelers have one of the league’s most uncertain offensive lines entering the summer. Any struggles there might further exaggerate Johnson’s short-range role. He posted an average depth of target of just 8.8 yards in 2020.
Draft Sharks Bottom Line
Shifty and elusive, Johnson excelled on short-range targets last season. He turned into Ben Roethlisberger’s go-to guy, although a high number of drops added volatility to his production.
The drops aren’t too concerning going forward. What’s likely to prevent a major year 3 jump is the arrival of Najee Harris and a much more balanced approach. Plus, any extended absence from Roethlisberger — now 39 — has the potential to torpedo this offense.
Coming off the board at WR21 in FFPC best balls, Johnson isn’t a standout value.