We may have to retire those theories that the Philadelphia Eagles don’t value the linebacker position enough. Sure, the drought continues. They still haven’t taken anyone who plays the position during the first round of any NFL Draft since Jerry Robinson was the choice in 1979, but the selection of Kyron Johnson with the 181st-overall draft choice is further evidence that the goal is to put more stock there than this organization.
If you don’t want to give Jonathan Gannon credit for anything else, at least give him credit for that. This definitely wasn’t going on when Andy Reid or Jim Schwartz paced the sidelines.
Add a nice prospect to the Eagles linebacker corps with the addition of Kyron Johnson.
A six-foot-one, 223-pound three-year starter at the University of Kansas, Johnson tallied 193 total tackles and 12.5 sacks, including 6.5 during the 2021 season, over the course of his five-year, 51-game career at the NCAA level. In his draft profile of the former Jayhawk, NFL.com’s Lance Zierlein gives him a grade of 5.89 as he believes the ceiling is Kyron becomes an average backup or a good special teams player.
It appears the Birds are transitioning from the base 4-3 defensive set to the 3-4. If so, Johnson is a nice strongside linebacker candidate. He ran a sub-4.5-second 40-yard dash at the most recent NFL Scouting Combine and had a good showing during the most recent Senior Bowl. Here he is bulldozing first-round pick, Trevor Penning, in Mobile.
Kyron Johnson joins a suddenly crowded linebacker room that includes T.J. Edwards, Shaun Bradley, Christian Elliss, Joe Ostman, Haason Reddick, JaCoby Stevens, Kyzir White, and Davion Taylor, and Nakobe Dean. Making the roster won’t be easy, but this gives Philly a nice young talent to work with, someone who could potentially occupy a place on the practice squad.
That may not be what the young man wants to hear. That appears to be where all roads lead, for now anyway.