dangolka (CBS) — Sunday night time’s conflict between the Patriots and the Seahawks had all of it. Cam Newton regarded each bit like Cam Newton of outdated, Russell Wilson placed on a present of his personal, and each defenses made some spotlight performs regardless of the high-scoring affair.
Whereas Newton is getting all the consideration, and receivers Julian Edelman and N’Keal Harry are snagging a number of the highlight after having profession evenings, we’d be foolish to not focus on the return of an essential wrinkle to the New England offense: A risk at fullback.
Likelihood is he received’t be the game-changer that James Develin quietly and violently grew to become within the Patriots offense, however Jakob Johnson confirmed that he can maintain his personal Sunday night time. The fullback performed a shade beneath 1 / 4 of New England’s offensive snaps, and along with offering a bit of extra safety for Newton, Johnson discovered the top zone within the fourth quarter for his first profession landing.
With the Patriots trailing 28-17 within the opening minute of the fourth, Newton took a shotgun snap from the one-foot line and faked a run. It was only a easy step ahead, however it made the Seattle protection chunk onerous, and left Johnson broad open ultimately zone. Newton linked with the fullback for his first passing landing with the Patriots.
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— New England Patriots (@Patriots) September 21, 2020
It’s unlucky that the Patriots didn’t save the play of their bag of tips for the sport’s closing goal-line play, however it was an important rating for New England on the time. It was an excellent greater deal for Johnson, who grew to become the primary participant from the NFL’s worldwide participant program to attain a landing. He’s additionally simply the second participant from Germany to search out the top zone in an NFL sport.
“I didn’t know that, however that’s superior,” stated Johnson, a local of Stuttgart, Germany. “I’m positive afterward that can sink in, however I’ll watch the movie and determine this sport out first.”
Johnson performed school soccer at Tennessee from 2014-17, initially enjoying linebacker earlier than making the transfer to tight finish. His subsequent cease was with the Stuttgart Scorpions within the German Soccer League in 2018, earlier than Invoice Belichick introduced him into the combo by the Worldwide Participant Pathway program as an undrafted free agent.
With Develin enjoying simply two video games attributable to what grew to become a career-ending neck harm final season, Johnson noticed motion in 4 video games for the Patriots in 2019. He made three begins and caught one of many two passes that went his method. Whereas fullbacks are by no means a characteristic of the offense, it seems Johnson may develop into a type of unsung parts of New England’s success.
Develin had 4 touchdowns in 2018 and was an essential a part of Tom Brady’s offense, one other line of protection for the quarterback and an undeterred blocker for operating backs. He was a key piece to an offense that morphed right into a run-heavy unit, speeding all the way in which to a Tremendous Bowl. He earned a great deal of respect by his profession for delivering some really monster blocks to assist spring Patriots runners, sometimes discovering the top zone alongside the way in which.
We’ll see what Johnson can turn into, however he confirmed some good indicators on Sunday night time. And even after a reasonably essential night career-wise, the 25-year-old had the usual-New England strategy to his efficiency.
“A loss is a loss,” he stated after New England’s 35-30 defeat. “There will likely be plenty of stuff to get higher from on this movie. That’s what I’ll concentrate on, after which on to the subsequent sport.”