Could Tru Johnson become the next Elite CB in the NFL?
Tru Johnson will be entering his third year in the NFL. Coincidentally, Johnson is entering the year that Fisher and the Rams have designated as their "break out year." I feel like this could be a break out for Tru as well, and his success could be important to the Rams success. As the depth chart currently sits, Johnson is the starting LCB and will be so when the Rams take the field week one. Many will disagree with this because they want the Rams to take Justin Gilbert or another top CB prospect, but I am just as high on this guy as Fisher is.
At 6'2" and 208 pounds, Tru has the size to match-up with bigger WRs in the leagues. Wingspan is another positive of Tru's at 33 ¼ inches which enables him to make plays like this:
That was one of three interceptions that Tru had in 2013. The other two interceptions came against Drew Brees in Week 15 and Week 1 against Carson Palmer. Johnson also forced a Matt Forte for his only forced fumble of the year in Week 12. To go along with 3 INTs and a FF, Tru Johnson had 68 total tackles and 12 pass defends. These are solid numbers for a guy who was preparing in the off season to be the third CB on this team, but now Tru should be preparing himself to be the best CB on this team in 2014. As we look towards Tru's potential to breakout in 2014 here is a scouting report from Pro Football Weekly:
Rare size-speed ratio. Looks every bit the part with extremely long arms to hem receivers at the line. Very good leaping ability, body control and ball skills - makes acrobatic plays in the air high-pointing the ball. Good coverage instincts and closing burst - jumps routes and shows awareness with his back to the ball.
One thing not mentioned is Johnson's ability to excel in press coverage. Enter Gregg Williams and now Johnson is in an even better to succeed with a coach that will use his talents. Pro Football Weekly also had this to say about Tru:
Would benefit highly from a structured environment and demanding coach who will challenge him and hold him accountable. Has the tools to become a No. 1 corner if he can be managed properly and stay focused.
That kind of sounds like Gregg Williams, but I could be wrong... In any case, Tru Johnson is the Rams' number one CB going into 2014, and I believe that he will excel in Williams' defense. Don't be surprised if the name Tru Johnson becomes a household name by the end of next season.