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A.J. Johnson, ILB

School: Tennessee  |  Conference: SEC
College Experience: Senior  |  Hometown: Gainesville, GA
Height/Weight: 6-2 / 242 lbs.
Projected Ranking
OverallPositionProj. Rnd.

Player Lowdown

Combine Results
40 Yd 20 Yd 10 Yd 225 Bench Vertical jump Broad Shuttle 3-Cone Drill
Workout Results
40 Yd 20 Yd 10 Yd 225 Bench Vertical jump Broad Shuttle 3-Cone Drill
4.79--- ----

Mock Draft Expert Analysis

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Player Overview

Johnson considered leaving for the NFL Draft in 2014, but returned to school and was among the SEC's leading tacklers for the past three seasons. However, his Volunteers career came to an end when the school suspended him Nov. 17 following a rape charge.

The NFL rescinded Johnson's invitation to attend the scouting combine after Johnson was indicted on rape charges. Johnson, accused of raping a 19-year-old woman in November, was indicted on two counts of rape on Feb. 12 by a grand jury in Knoxville, Tenn.

Johnson was Tennessee's leading tackler in 2014 with 101.

Strengths Weaknesses

STRENGTHS: Unlike most inside linebackers who possess a compact, muscled-up frame, Johnson is a bit lanky. Like his athletic build suggests, Johnson is quick and he can slither past would-be blockers to make tackles in the hole.

With greater upper body strength in 2014, Johnson could boost his stock. He has just enough speed to meet backs at the edge and is fluid enough to handle coverage responsibilities. Perhaps Johnson's greatest skill is his heavy-hitting as a tackler. He has a nice closing burst to gather momentum and consistently delivers the emphatic pop that has no doubt helped him build his all-conference reputation.

WEAKNESSES: He is reliant on beating blockers to the action because he struggles to disengage once they latch on, showing only average power and technique for the position. Worse, Johnson often drops his head on contact, losing sight of the ball.

Johnson's talent has been clear since his freshman season and his production speaks for itself. He isn't the clean NFL projection that his reputation might lead you to believe, however, and also comes with some off-field baggage. He was arrested February 8, 2014 for purchasing alcohol for a minor and resisting arrest.

--Rob Rang

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Player News
05/06/2015 - Former Tennessee linebacker A.J. Johnson is seeking a separate trial from suspended Volunteers cornerback Michael Williams as both men face aggravated rape charges. Lawyers representing Johnson filed a motion Friday asking to sever the trials of the two defendants. The motion says Williams "made out of court statements referencing Mr. Johnson" and indicates the statements shouldn't be admissible against Johnson. Johnson's attorney, Tom Dillard, said in a statement that "it is not out of the ordinary in criminal cases to seek separate trials when multiple persons are charged, given the rules of evidence and constitutional issues involved." Johnson and Williams were indicted in February after being named as suspects in a rape investigation and suspended from the team in November. Johnson has graduated and completed his eligibility. - AP Sports


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