The Versatile Factor

#8. David Johnson– Whenever you hear about the Arizona Cardinals offense, you think of the explosiveness they display. With a healthy Carson Palmer and an offensive line protecting them, they’re dangerous. They have the receivers to take the tops off the zone, a nice tight end, the savvy veteran of course in Fitz, then you have the hidden gem of a running back in David Johnson. Today, he chimes in as my second ranked running back, the third player making his debut and my eighth best player on the ten best players list. I really enjoy his style of play. He’s tall to play the running back position. At 6’1 and 225 pounds, he comes off as a bigger back but has the ability to play smaller than he appears. He can “get skinny” and ease his way through the trenches and his efforts to jump start really stand out to others watching him meaning he can cut on a dime quickly and go in the completely opposite direction. Not only is he able to dominate the game from the running standpoint, he’s very sure-handed as a receiver and that makes defenses have to account for him not just as a runner, but in open space once he catches the football. He can line up in the slot, you can flank him wide as a receiver and he’s more than capable of finishing a game with 150 yards rushing and 80 yards receiving so taking a game over in multiple ways for him is just another day at the office. I love his motor. He’s always moving and he’s shifty enough to get away from would be tacklers. He makes defenses load up the box with an extra guy to be aware of him in coverage. Last season, he had a breakout season in his second year in the league, what many consider to be a sophomore slump. He recorded 100 yards in 15 straight games tying Barry Sanders and when you can be mentioned in the same category as a legend, you know you’re doing something the right way. David Johnson finished the season having carried the football a total of 293 times for 1,239 rushing yards with 16 rushing touchdowns. He was also ranked 7th in the NFL in rushing yards and ranked second in the NFL in rushing touchdowns with 16. Johnson also finished the season having caught 80 passes for 879 yards and four touchdowns. He had the most receiving yards among running backs and finished the year with 20 total touchdowns. The versatility he displays is something that keeps defensive coordinators on their toes wondering how to shut him down. You take away his efforts to run it, he can be used as a receiver. He’s truly made a name for himself since coming into the league in 2015.