Theo Johnson believes he has ‘high ceiling’ as Giants TE situation remains uncertain

Theo Johnson believes he has ‘high ceiling’ as Giants TE situation remains uncertain

Theo Johnson Giants
Theo Johnson (Flickr)

Theo Johnson’s playing time in the NFL could come down to external factors as much as the work he puts in this summer.

Darren Waller’s status for the 2024 season is still unknown as the Giants’ veteran tight end continues to mull over retirement. For insurance, the Giants took the six-foot-six, 250-pound prospect out of Penn State with the seventh pick of the fourth round.

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If Waller retires, Johnson has a clear path to take over as TE1. If Waller stays, those prospects plummet.

“I’ve heard stuff, I’m not sure what’s going to happen,” Johnson told reporters at rookie camp. “At the end of the day, him being in the room is going to be good for everybody, so we’ll see how it shakes out… I’m super excited for whatever role I have this year. Whatever that looks like, I’m going to take it in full stride and I’m going to put my all into it. So whatever role that is, I’m going to give everything I have to it.’

The 23-year-old is certainly built to be an NFL tight end. His stature is complemented by the strength and athleticism that made him an integral part of Penn State’s offense. Despite accruing only 77 receptions for 938 yards and 12 touchdowns in four seasons, he was an invaluable run blocker to the ground-first Nittany Lion offense.

At the combine, he ran the second-fasted 40 time (4.57) amongst all tight ends.

“He’s smart. He’s a young professional, a true pro, loves the game,” Giants head coach Brian Daboll said. “Has good size. Can bend. Can run. Obviously tested really well. But had a really good pro day, too, at Penn State, moving around, running his routes, hitting the bag. You can only get so much out of it. You can tell his bend, you can tell he’s athletic. He’s a good guy we thought we could work with.”

Darren Waller Giants
Darren Waller (Kyle Sweeting, amNew York)

While Johnson can help bolster a new-look offensive line in the run game, he will could also have an opportunity to become a security blanket for quarterback Daniel Jones and an evolving passing game that fellow rookie Malik Nabers now headlines.

“I think the big thing for me is consistency. Being consistent. I’ll flash a lot of really good things on tape, but it’s putting all that stuff together every single snap that’s going to help me reach my potential.

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