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A.J. Johnson | Linebacker

Team: Tennessee Volunteers
Age / DOB:  (26) / 12/24/1991
Ht / Wt:  6'2" / 245

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Ex-Tennessee LB AJ Johnson's court date for aggravated rape charges is set for August 24.
He will plead not guilty. Football is insignificant in this case, but we were never fans of Johnson's on-field game, at least compared to where many projected him. We doubt he is picked or gets a look in the NFL until the situation concludes. Mon, Mar 9, 2015 11:30:00 AM

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Tennessee LB A.J. Johnson "would be a fringe draft pick without the off-field concerns," according to CBS Sports' Rob Rang.

"Johnson was an ultra-productive player for Tennessee (425 career tackles) but he lacks top speed to the perimeter and struggles to disengage from blocks," Rang wrote. Last Thursday, Johnson was indicted on two counts of rape. He was kicked off the team in November when first accused of the crimes. Johnson has also been arrested in the past for purchasing alcohol for a minor and resisting arrest. The NFL rescinded his combine on Friday.
Source: CBS Sports
Mon, Feb 16, 2015 10:47:00 PM

The NFL has withdrawn the combine invitation for former Tennessee LB A.J. Johnson, according to Jim Wyatt of the Tennesseean.

The former Volunteers LB was indicted on aggravated rape charges yesterday, and his attorney said that he was making plans to surrender to authorities. Heading into the season, the 6-foot-2, 245-pound Johnson was a potential Day-three prospect.
Fri, Feb 13, 2015 02:03:00 PM

Former Tennessee LB A.J. Johnson has been indicted on aggravated rape charges.

The charges stem from an allegation into an event that took play in November involving a Tennessee student. In fact, Johnson was charged with two counts. Johnson finished the season on suspension due to the original allegations.
Fri, Feb 13, 2015 09:58:00 AM

NFL Media draft analyst Lance Zierlein believes Tennessee senior LB A.J. Johnson's "off-the-field issues must be monitored as they could sink his draft stock."

Johnson's career ended in disheartening fashion after he was suspended from the team in November after a rape allegation against a 19-year-old student emerged. He was having a great season up until that point. The 6-foot-2, 245-pound Johnson was a third-day prospect heading into the season. Many consider him to be one of the best linebackers in the class who plays off the line of scrimmage. We weren't in that camp before he got into trouble, and we remain outside of it now.
Mon, Feb 9, 2015 07:55:00 PM

Tennessee senior LB A.J. Johnson has officially been suspended from all team activities after police decided to investigate him for sexual assault.

Johnson's name was leaked earlier today, but the Tennessee program made it official. Defensive back Michael Williams has also been suspended from all team activities. Many consider Johnson one of the best off-LOS linebackers in this class when on the field. We do not.
Mon, Nov 17, 2014 04:24:00 PM

Tennessee senior LB A.J. Johnson is one of the two football players being investigated for sexual assault and rape, according to beat writer Matt Slovin.

Slovin cites a police source. The other is sophomore defensive back Michael Williams. Head coach Butch Jones has not revealed the names at this time but said the duo will not practice while being investigated.
Mon, Nov 17, 2014 01:38:00 PM

NFL scouts are "enamored" with Tennessee senior LB A.J. Johnson, according to's Bucky Brooks.

Johnson entered this season having posted back-to-back 100-tackle seasons. "The impressive production matched a savvy game built on instincts, awareness and toughness," Brooks wrote. "Although his critics point to his inability to work free from blockers as a concern, the 6-foot-2, 245-pound senior has a knack for getting to the ball, and that will make him a favorite of NFL defensive coordinators searching for a hunter in the middle. Against Ole Miss, Johnson needs to show evaluators that he can be a factor as a defender in space, while chasing down Wallace on the perimeter on zone-read plays and designed quarterback runs." Johnson is "playing like a player with something to prove," an AFC West scout told earlier this week. Johnson ranks amongst the FBS leaders with 41 solo tackles.
Fri, Oct 17, 2014 06:28:00 PM

Tennessee senior LB A.J. Johnson "is playing like a player with something to prove," said an AFC West scout.

"He wants his name mentioned with the best in the country," the scout said. Johnson ranks amongst the FBS leaders with 41 solo tackles. "He has proven himself as a powerful, consistent tackler and reportedly received a mid-round draft grade last offseason before opting to return to the Vols," wrote's Daniel Jeremiah, Bucky Brooks and Charles Davis. "With a strong second half of the season, that decision to return will have been a good one."
Thu, Oct 16, 2014 08:50:00 PM

Tennessee senior LB A.J. Johnson had 17 tackles in Saturday's 35-32 loss to Georgia.

It was Johnson's 21st career game in which he recorded double-digit tackles. Despite the strong effort, CBS' Dane Brugler wrote that Johnson, "had too many wild angles, wasted steps and missed tackles vs. Georgia." He went on to say that the senior linebacker, "lacks the strength to disengage blocks and he isn't a sure-fire starter at the next level many thought he could be earlier in his career." According to Brugler, Johnson projects as a third-day prospect. Johnson has led the SEC with 324 tackles over the last three years and was named First Team All-SEC in 2013.
Source: CBS Sports
Sun, Sep 28, 2014 04:06:00 PM

Tennessee senior LB A.J. Johnson is "not a workout warrior who’ll wow scouts with a great combine workout," writes TFY Draft Insider's Tony Pauline.

Pauline mentioned Johnson as a Week 1 draft "riser," writing: "Johnson was the catalyst of the Volunteers defensive domination over Utah State. During the Vols 31-point win the senior posted nine tackles, forced a fumble, broke up a pass then intercepted another in the fourth quarter which Tennessee translated into a score. Johnson’s not a workout warrior who’ll wow scouts with a great combine workout rather a tough, instinctive linebacker who’ll do well on the inside/middle of the defense." Over the last three years, Johnson led the SEC with 324 tackles; he earned First Team All-SEC honors in 2013. The Vols' prospect was given a mid-round grade from the NFL Advisory Committee when he considered jumping to the pros over the winter.
Thu, Sep 4, 2014 03:52:00 PM

CBS Sports' Rob Rang believes Tennessee senior LB A.J. Johnson's "greatest skill is his heavy-hitting as a tackler."

"Perhaps Johnson's greatest skill is his heavy-hitting as a tackler. He has a nice closing burst to gather momentum and consistently delivers the emphatic pop that has no doubt helped him build his all-conference reputation, Rang wrote. Over the last three years, the Vols prospect has led the SEC with 324 career tackles, and earned First Team All-SEC honors in 2013. Johnson considered leaving for the NFL after last season, until he was given a mid-round grade from the NFL Advisory Committee. With a strong season this year, he has a chance to impress evaluators and improve his draft stock.
Source: CBS Sports
Mon, Aug 25, 2014 10:42:00 AM's Chase Goodbread believes Tennessee senior LB A.J. Johnson has the most to prove amongst SEC draft prospects in 2014.

Johnson decided to return to school over the winter, a decision most everybody thought was the correct one. "Now, he has to show NFL scouts he's improved on some of the knocks on his game, specifically, open-field tackling and playing on the perimeter," wrote Goodbread. "Exhibit A: Auburn's 444 rushing yards against the Vols last season." Draft analysts projected Johnson as a fourth- to fifth-round prospect when he was weighing his decision over the winter. We think he needs plenty of refinement to transcend that projection in the 2015 draft. Johnson is a limited player who wins between the tackles and only attacks effectively in a straight line.
Wed, May 21, 2014 10:51:00 PM

Tennessee senior-to-be LB A.J. Johnson was arrested on Saturday.

The charges against Johnson and two others with ties to the Tennessee program, current defensive tackle Danny O'Brien and former linebacker Dontavis Sapp, were not disclosed. Head coach Butch Jones acknowledged the arrests but offered no further comment in terms of a punishment. Johnson has generated buzz for two seasons, but we think he is a limited player who wins between the tackles and moving in a straight line.
Source: Nooga
Sun, Feb 9, 2014 10:47:00 AM

Tennessee junior LB A.J. Johnson will return to school for his final year.

Jimmy Hyams adds draft analysts projected Johnson in the fourth- to fifth-round. The junior drew some preseason buzz, but he is a run stuffing linebacker who works best moving forward and between tackles. He could be a liability and plays and runs in space.
Tue, Jan 7, 2014 01:20:00 PM