Johnson rushed eight times for 43 yards and secured five of six targets for 23 yards during Sunday's 30-27 loss to the 49ers
Johnson ultimately tied LeGarrette Blount for the team lead in carries, though Blount was ejected with 10 minutes remaining in the game for coming off the sidelines and knocking over a San Francisco defender who pushed quarterback Matthew Stafford. The rookie was also significantly involved as a receiver, despite Theo Riddick -- who drew 12 targets -- remaining the Lions' preferred passing-down option. While it will continue to be hard to trust Johnson as a standalone fantasy asset so long as Detroit employs a committee approach to the running back position, Johnson could be in store for an uptick in carries in the short-term if Blount is slapped with a suspension.
Johnson made his professional debut in Friday's preseason opener against the Raiders and gained 34 yards on seven carries as well as 33 yards on four receptions.
Johnson looked nifty and patient in his first professional game, flashing promise as both a runner and pass catcher. His numbers, though solid as is, would have looked much better had a 57-yard scamper not been called back due to a holding penalty. While LeGarrette Blount predictably got the start in Friday's game, Johnson was notably the only running back on the field for the Lions' first third-down attempt of the game -- though it's necessary to mention that Theo Riddick didn't play for unspecified reasons. It will be helpful if Riddick gets some reps in Detroit's second preseason game next Friday against the Giants, as we'd then get a better feel for how Johnson might fit into the offense when everyone is available.
Johnson has mostly been working with the backups during the opening days of training camp, Kyle Meinke of MLive Media Group reports.
It sounds like LeGarrette Blount and Theo Riddick are dominating the first-team reps thus far into camp, though Tim Twentyman of the Lions' official site reported that Johnson took some reps with the goal-line offense during Monday's session. While there's still plenty of time for Johnson to work his way into a bigger role with the starters as the summer unfolds, every indication to date suggests that Blount has a solid grip on the early-down role in advance of the 2018 campaign. With that said, Detroit is expected to take a committee approach at running back, so fantasy owners can still expect Johnson to have some sort of role on offense.
|4||9/30/18||@ DAL||1:00 pm|
|Bye: Week 6|
|7||10/21/18||@ MIA||1:00 pm|
|9||11/4/18||@ MIN||1:00 pm|
|10||11/11/18||@ CHI||1:00 pm|
|14||12/9/18||@ ARI||4:25 pm|
|15||12/16/18||@ BUF||1:00 pm|
|17||12/30/18||@ GB||1:00 pm|