Former Lions running back Kerryon Johnson has gotten looks from teams in recent months, but he’s back with the team that first signed him last offseason.
The Detroit Lions parted ways with running back Kerryon Johnson after the 2021 draft. The Philadelphia Eagles signed him, then waived him with an injury designation in August. Now, with some injuries to their running back group, the Eagles signed Johnson to their practice squad on Tuesday.
Johnson signed with the San Francisco 49ers after the Eagles let him go, playing in one game earlier this season on special teams. The 49ers waived him in October, and in recent months he has had workouts with the Green Bay Packers, New Orleans Saints, Minnesota Vikings and Jacksonville Jaguars when injuries thinned the running back ranks for those teams.
Johnson was taken in the second round of the 2018 draft by the Lions. He led the team in rushing in each of his first two seasons, averaging a nice 5.4 yards per carry as a rookie. Knee injuries in both seasons led to the Lions drafting D’Andre Swift in 2020, then signing Adrian Peterson late in the 2020 preseason. Last season, Johnson had just 52 carries for the Lions.
Kerryon Johnson may find a fresh opportunity with Eagles
Eagles running back Miles Sanders suffered a broken hand in Week 16. While he won’t yet be placed on IR, he will not play in Week 17. Jordan Howard is dealing with a stinger, which has his status in doubt. Right now, Boston Scott and Kenneth Gainwell are the only fully healthy running backs on Philadelphia’s active roster.
Johnson will join another former Lions running back, Jason Huntley (fifth-round pick out of New Mexico State in 2020), on the Eagles’ practice squad. As they try to finish a playoff push and fill out a roster of healthy backs, Johnson may be counted on for more than a bit role in the Philadelphia backfield.