6’5 310 pounds | Guard | Alabama
Versatility - He played LT, RT, and LG at Alabama. Scouts project him as a OG in the pros and I have to agree. I think his versatility will add to his stock and it will probably make him the second OG taken in the 2010 NFL draft. A lot of scouts think he could start at RG and back up RT. I believe he could play RT but only in a man blocking scheme. He lacks the athleticism to play RT in a zone blocking scheme.
Technique- Very solid technique. Gets out of his stance quick and has a very good first punch. He constantly drives his opponent back and then gets to the second level. He does lack athleticism and lateral movement, which will make it hard for him to become an elite pass blocker. However, the fact that he is technically sound will make teams overlook some of his flaws. He is a very smart player and has no problem picking up stunts. He isn’t much of a mauler but his technique makes up for a lot of it.
Pass Blocking-He is not the best pass blocker. The Bama line only allowed a sack a game, but looking at that alone might give you the wrong impression. Mike Johnson is not athletic and that shows when he faces fast DTs and DEs. If you look back at the SEC championship game, you’ll see how much help he needed during passing downs.
Run Blocking- This is where he will make his money. He is a pretty impressive run blocker. He gets after his man on every play. In 2008 the Alabama line averaged 180+ yards a game on the ground, In 2009, that total raised to over 200 yards. Johnson is impressive sealing the hole. Again, if you look back at the SEC championship game, Johnson really only missed a of couple blocks. He gets off the ball so fast and really understand leverage in the run game.
Character Concerns-None that I know of. He was a leader at Bama and considered a very smart guy. Nothing big that may hurt his draft stock that I can find.
Overall- Mike Johnson is probably going to go around the top of the third round. Of course, you never know. Some team could reach for him in the 2nd round because he is an NFL ready run blocker. I have little info about whether he fits a man blocking scheme or zone but I believe he would do better in a man blocking scheme. His lack of quickness may make it hard to adjust to the zone scheme. However, his technique would help him be effective in either scheme. I believe interior linemen are in high demand and Johnson is probably the 3rd best interior linemen. I could see him having a successful career. He is definitely NFL ready and would probably be ready to start on day one.