Athletic, nimble and versatile, Zion Johnson is an intriguing guard prospect in the 2022 NFL Draft. After first making the transition from the FCS to FBS level, Johnson played both guard and tackle for Boston College and could do the same in the pros. He projects more as a guard and has the tools necessary to become a solid starter, which is why he should hear his name called at some point on Day 2 of the draft.
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Zion Johnson Draft Profile
College: Boston College
A late bloomer, Johnson started his collegiate career at FCS program Davidson before making the move to a Power 5 school. He moved back inside to left guard after playing at left tackle in 2020 — he has the athleticism to play left tackle, but his subpar length makes him a better fit inside. He’s an athletic mover with excellent balance and a great feel for mirroring as a pass protector. His hands are quick and his placement excellent, and he thrives on the move when asked to pull or climb to the second level off combo blocks.
Johnson is a bit underpowered for the inside, and he might have a rough transition to facing grown men in the NFL. He too often gets stalemated at the point of attack and will likely give up ground to quality bull-rushers. He doesn’t show the kind of dominant thump in his hands that you want on the inside.
He’ll appeal to outside-zone teams more than power teams, but there’s plenty to like with Johnson’s athleticism and technique, which could allow him to play some tackle in a pinch. He has a chance to be a solid starter for a pass-heavy team that emphasizes pass-protection ability.