David Johnson’s excellent pass protection helps Bolts deal with Ware


The Chargers made a minor move on Wednesday to add depth to a position that is filled to the gills.

San Diego and tight end David Johnson, formerly of the Pittsburgh Steelers, agreed to terms on the second day of the NFL free agency period. While the figures have not been released, Chargers.com announced it as a two-year deal.

Johnson, a member of the 2009 NFL Draft class from Arkansas State University, leaves Pittsburgh as a tight end who may not have racked up stats with Heath Miller mostly taking the brunt, but is a versatile player who can help the Bolts in many ways.

One of those ways is in the blocking department. In 39 pass blocking snaps last year according to Pro Football Focus, the former Steeler did not yield a single pressure, constituting for a sack, hit or hurry.

This certainly might be a small sample size and it is likely that Johnson will be one of four tight ends that the Chargers choose to use this year with Antonio Gates, Ladarius Green, and John Phillips currently on the roster. Gates was looking like a possible cap casualty but has yet to be released by San Diego. So, in all likelihood, Johnson will be used in limited situations.

The move bolsters a solid tight end unit for a team that made the playoffs for the first time since the 2008-09 season. If Johnson can find similar ways of contributing as he did in Pittsburgh over the course of his career, this could turn out nicely for San Diego in areas that are not necessarily on your average stat sheet.

This is a solid move because Telesco is showing a commitment to keeping the identity on offense. With DeMarcus Ware, Von Miller, Tamba Hali, and Justin Houston in division, Johnson will help keep Rivers up right in short-yardage situations.

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