Two separate knee injuries have forced Lions running back Kerryon Johnson to miss 14 games over his first two seasons in the league.
When healthy and on the field, Johnson has proven to be an elusive playmaker with three-down ability as a lead back. He's averaged 4.5 yards per carry through his first two seasons and has shown to be a very capable receiver.
It's not a matter of ability for Johnson, but rather availability, and he hopes the new knee brace on his right knee helps keep him healthy and on the field. Knee braces aren't always the most comfortable things to wear, especially for skill-position players, but Johnson says he's comfortable wearing it.
"Me and the knee brace are one," Johnson told reporters in a Zoom call over the weekend. "We're one person. I work with it and it works with me. I've used it all offseason. I used it all when I was coming back last season. That's just the new me. I'm the knee-brace guy everybody jokes about."
Johnson said he mostly likes having the knee brace on because it gives him a little peace of mind.
The Lions want to be more balanced on offense this season and consistently run the football better. Johnson is expected to be a big part of that, along with running back D’Andre Swift, who the team drafted in the second round this offseason out of Georgia.
A healthy Johnson, paired with Swift, has the potential to be a nice one-two punch for Detroit.