The New York Giants are adding depth to their defensive line in Garden State native and former Tennessee Titan Austin Johnson.
There will be a new face on the New York Giants defensive line next season. Dan Duggan of The Athletic reports the team is signing former Tennessee Titans defensive tackle Austin Johnson.
The Giants are signing DT Austin Johnson, per source. A second-round pick in 2016, Johnson spent the past four seasons with the Titans (13 starts). NJ native's position coach at Penn State: New Giants DL coach Sean Spencer.
— Dan Duggan (@DDuggan21) March 26, 2020
Johnson is a 25-year-old from nearby Galloway, NJ. The Garden State native put together a stellar college career at Penn State that saw him total 24 tackles for a loss and 154 total tackles in three college seasons. As a result, he was drafted by the Titans in the second round in 2016.
He has spent each of his four first pro seasons in Tennessee where he’s made 13 starts totaling 83 total tackles, 2.5 sacks, and five passes defended. Last season, he played in all 16 regular-season games and three more in the playoffs for Tennessee. He finished the year with 23 total tackles, one tackle for a loss, and one pass defended.
At 6-foot-4 and 314 pounds, Johnson has great size and will likely fit in as a rotational player for the Giants.
It is unclear whether the Giants will play a 3-4, 4-3 or mix of both defensive schemes in 2020, but regardless, Johnson will likely be behind Leonard Williams, Dalvin Tomlinson, Dexter Lawerence, and BJ Hill on the defensive line depth chart.
The signing is more of a low-risk, high reward addition for the Giants as they hope Johnson can tap the potential that made him an early draft choice in 2016.
Johnson becomes the ninth external free agent signed by the Giants this offseason and joins James Bradberry, Kyler Fackrell, and Blake Martinez as one of New York’s key defensive additions.
Per over the cap, the Giants now have just $13,958,042 million in cap space available, which means low-price additions like Johnson will likely be all they can afford the rest of the offseason.