HomeSportsFormer NFL Running Back Kerryon Johnson Blames Matt Patricia for Injuries, Shortened Career

Former NFL Running Back Kerryon Johnson Blames Matt Patricia for Injuries, Shortened Career

by Griffin McVeigh
Kerryon Johnson
(Rey Del Rio/Getty Images)

When Kerryon Johnson was drafted out of Auburn, he was thought to have a chance to become a solid running back in the NFL. The Detroit Lions invested a second-round pick in Johnson and were hoping he became another great NFL back in the league.

Injuries were the story of Johnson’s early career but when he was on the field, positive results were being produced. For what was still a rebuilding Detroit team, Johnson was able to produce 641 yards and three touchdowns on just 118 touches. However, those injuries were too much to overcome.

Johnson is now out of the league, with knee and neck injuries being the main reason. When asked why he could not continue playing, Johnson put blame on former head coach Matt Patricia. Calling the now New England Patriots staff a “military general”, it’s safe to say Johnson was not a fan of his stint in Detroit.

“Because playing for a military general left me down 2 knees and a neck,” Johnson said.

Johnson began his career during the 2018 season, appearing in just 10 games. He was last seen playing for the San Francisco 49ers in 2021 after being elevated from the practice squad. Philadelphia had the running back on their practice squad as well but never elevated him to the active roster.

Patricia and Johnson wound up leaving the Lions at the same time. The head coach was let go after a highly unsuccessful stint in charge. His final record was 13-29 and never came close to making the playoffs. In fact, in both complete seasons, Patricia finished dead last in the NFC North.

As for Johnson, his career spanned just over four years. In total, he rushed for 1,225 yards and eight touchdowns.

Kerryon Johnson Still Haves Love For City of Detroit, Lions Organization

Johnson may have not had the best experience with the Lions but he still seems to be in good graces with the organization. He explained why there is still love between him and the Lions, citing his former teammates.

In fact, if the Lions get back into the playoffs this sure, Johnson said he will be there.

“Played with some awesome dudes and not everyone involved was bad…plus i loved living there other than it being cold all the way until may damn near,” Johnson said.

Three seasons with Detroit may have ended the career but the relationship is still a positive one. Not something you can say too often in the NFL.