Eagles rookie NFL player comparisons: Kyron Johnson


As we do every offseason, we’ll be comparing each of the Philadelphia Eagles’ rookies to current or former NFL players. Today we’ll find a comp for sixth-round SAM linebacker Kyron Johnson.


Previous player comp profiles

Jordan Davis | Cam Jurgens | Nakobe Dean


First, who did Johnson say he patterned his game after?

“One of the players that’s here now, Haason Reddick,” Johnson said in May. “I watched him, Von Miller. I used to watch J.J. Watt, Tyus Bowser. I used to watch a lot of edge rushers. I try to keep it to a minimum how many players I watch, but I like to see the types of moves that they do. I like to see their get-offs. I like to see what’s their game style, like how do they attack offensive linemen.”

Johnson was both an off-ball linebacker and an edge rusher at Kansas, which likely makes him a fit at the SAM linebacker position in the Eagles’ defense. Johnson is 6’0, 231, and he ran a 4.40 40 at Kansas’ pro day. He had his share of moments at the Senior Bowl, flashing impressive athleticism in pass rushing one-on-one drills. He plays with speed and enthusiasm.

(embed)https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9TGEd-Jlij4(/embed)

In 2021, Johnson had 63 tackles (8.5 for loss), 6.5 sacks, and 4 forced fumbles. He also had 17 career special teams tackles. He is a try-hard player who will likely contribute immediately on special teams, and could even get an opportunity here and there as a situational pass rusher.

The player he reminds me of is Dennis Gardeck, a similarly undersized 6’0, 232-pound try-hard pass rusher / core special teamer with the Cardinals, who also plays the game with enthusiasm.

(embed)https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_QzRSBb0shE(/embed)

In four seasons in the NFL after going undrafted in 2018, Gardeck has 38 special teams tackles, according to the Cardinals’ website. In 2020 he broke out with 7 sacks (which also happens to be his career sack total).

Johnson can be a similar type of high energy player for the Eagles.


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