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Steelers All 90: Can Rookie Tyree Johnson Be Answer for OLB Depth? – Steelers Now

Steelers All 90: ILB Buddy Johnson Needs to Show Growth to Earn Role
Steelers All 90: Can Rookie Tyree Johnson Be Answer for OLB Depth?
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All 90 is a Steelers Now series profiling each of the 90 members of the Pittsburgh Steelers 2022 offseason roster.
Acquired: The Steelers signed Tyree Johnson as an undrafted free agent after the 2022 NFL Draft on April 30, 2022.
Last season: Johnson had his most productive season at Texas A&M as a senior, recording nine tackles for loss, 8.5 sacks and 31 total tackles while starting at defensive end on the same line as Steelers third-round pick DeMarvin Leal. He was named second-team All-SEC.
College: Johnson redshirted his freshman season in 2017 and was a backup in 2018 before becoming a three-year starter beginning with the 2019 season.
He finished his Aggies career with 100 tackles, 23.5 for loss, 18 sacks, three forced fumbles and one fumble recovery. A Washington, D.C. native, Johnson played at St. John’s College High School.
Camp outlook: Like many Steelers outside linebackers over the years, Johnson is making the transition from 4-3 college defensive end to 3-4 pro outside linebacker. He long, lanky frame should make that easier for him than most, and the Steelers’ heavy use of four-down sub packages makes that transition easier than it used to be.
The team does not have any established depth behind starters T.J. Watt and Alex Highsmith at the moment, with Genard Avery and Derrek Tuszka penciled in as the backups. Between those two, Delontae Scott and Tuzar Skipper, the Steelers do have more-experienced players at the position, but no one that would block a strong camp performance from an undrafted rookie like Johnson.
Future: Johnson signed a three-year rookie contract that will pay him $705,000 in base salary in 2022 and runs through the end of the 2024 season.
The rest of the 90:

Steelers All 90: ILB Buddy Johnson Needs to Show Growth to Earn Role
Steelers Now NFL Notebook, July 8
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