David Johnson

David Johnson


Chance of Injury in 2021: question mark 84%
Chance of Injury per Game: question mark 10.8%
Projected Games missed for 2021: question mark 3.5
Durability: question mark 4

Medium Risk


David Johnson Player Overview

What You Need To Know:

  • D.J. remained impressive as a pass catcher last year. But injuries (back, ankle) continued to limit production.
  • He fell out of favor under new HC Kliff Kingsbury, who found success with mid-year addition Kenyan Drake.
  • Houston showed they’re invested in Johnson, dealing DeAndre Hopkins in a package for the former Round 3 pick. He projects as the lead back ahead of Duke Johnson.

Falling flat

Looking to recapture his 2016 form, Johnson instead lost his job.

Ankle and back injuries forced 3 absences from the former Round 3 pick. With a new HC (Kliff Kingsbury) calling the shots, D.J. never found his footing following a strong Week 1: 18 carries, 82 yards, 6 catches, 55 yards and 1 score.

Johnson handled only 76 carries across his final 11 appearances and watched as the front office dealt for Kenyan Drake in late October. The former Dolphin went on to rush for over 100 yards 3 times.

Overall, Johnson’s rushing efficiency remained lackluster (3.7 yards per carry). Yet he still showed difference-making ability as a pass catcher. He registered games of 11, 9, 8 and 7 targets, helping him snag 36 balls at 10.3 yards per. His efforts earned him the 9th highest PFF receiving grade among 32 RBs with 40+ targets.

2020 outlook

D.J. will team up with Duke Johnson to form a 1-2 bunch. HC Bill O’Brien called his newest back a “3-down” player in April. OC Tim Kelly had a different thought in May.

"When you have guys that are versatile and are both a vital running threat and a good receiving threat, it allows you to open up and be creative and find different ways to get guys the ball in space and do some good things," Kelly said via Houston’s official site. "So, yeah, we're excited to have both of those guys back there.”

What’s most likely here? David sees the bulk of the early-down work, while Duke mixes in as the change-of-pace. After all, Houston traded DeAndre Hopkins and…

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David Johnson Injury History

Date League Injury Details
Oct 20, 2019 NFL Pedal Ankle Sprain/Pull Unspecified Grade 1 Tweaked a previously existing ankle injury and never came back into the game against the New York Giants on his first carry of the game
Sep 10, 2017 NFL Hand Wrist Dislocation Johnson missed the remainder of the season after going down in Week 1. He underwent surgery and didn't claim to be fully healthy until mid-January.
Jan 1, 2017 NFL Knee MCL Sprain Grade 2 Johnson ended his season early in Week 17 with a sprained MCL. He avoided surgery.
Nov 27, 2016 NFL Hand Finger Dislocation Johnson dislocated a finger in Week 12. The injury did not cost him any games.
Aug 3, 2015 NFL Thigh Hamstring Sprain/Pull Unspecified Grade 1 Johnson didn't practice in full until August 18. He was buried on the depth chart come Week 1 of the regular season.