Former Mountaineer Will Johnson May Start For Steelers - WVU Football, WVU Basketball, News - Mountaineer Sports

Former Mountaineer Will Johnson May Start For Steelers


Walk into an NFL locker room during the preseason and you will see known starters holding down their own locker. Other players fighting for a roster spot must share lockers.

Former Mountaineer Will Johnson is in the latter of the two groups, but could find himself with his own locker in the near future.

Johnson opened training camp as one of two fullbacks on the Steelers roster. Presumed starter David Johnson suffered a season-ending injury in the preseason, which left Will Johnson as the only fullback on the roster.

The Steelers have left Johnson as the only fullback on the roster for now, which indicates he could see plenty of playing time this fall.

"It's definitely been a dream come true," Johnson said. "I have been fortunate enough to be in this organization and blessed to come in here and show what I can do."

Johnson, as any good young player in the NFL would do, paid close attention to David Johnson in camp. Having an opportunity to start is something he wanted, just not due to injury.

"I've been given a great opportunity," Johnson said. "It is unfortunate the way I got it, but I am more than capable of doing it. I'm just excited they have given me the opportunity to do it."

Johnson played tight end and fullback by the end of his college career at West Virginia University. Playing those two positions helped him prepare for his current job with the Steelers.

"I believe reading defensive fronts and tight end blocking transitions over to the fullback really well," Johnson stated. "Just being able to keep my pass routes and catching means I have a lot of versatility in my game."

Versatility is important for players trying to make the final cut on an NFL roster. Typically those who can play special teams win the tiebreaker over those who cannot.

The Steelers could decide to pick up a fullback who is cut right before the season. They could also decided to go with Johnson this fall.

"Hopefully I am still around come the regular season," Johnson said. "I am taking it day-by-day and not looking ahead. I am just focusing on right now."

Johnson has decent hands and can be a factor in the passing game. At this point, the Steelers are using his size and agility to help protect Ben Roethlisberger and lead the way for the running backs.

"I am basically a lead blocker and a halfback some," Johnson said of his role with the Steelers. "I got one carry tonight and it was okay because we are down on backs right now. They are using me as a lead blocker and trying to fulfill that role and I am comfortable with that."

Johnson will try to continue impressing his coaches tonight when the Steelers visit the Buffalo Bills.

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