Chiefs add small-school defensive end

Warpaint Illustrated Contributor
Posted Apr 27, 2008

The seventh round is no place to look for starters, unless you’re the Kansas City Chiefs. Last year’s seventh-round pick, Michael Allan, didn’t start, and won’t this year, but he does have a chance to earn significant playing time, as he was one of only two tight ends on KC’s roster before the draft began.

The Chiefs’ 2006 seventh-rounder, Jarrad Page, is a starter at free safety. With so many holes left open on Kansas City’s roster this year, don’t be surprised if one of this year’s seventh-rounders logs some significant playing time.

One such player might be Gardner-Webb’s Brian Johnston. Jared Allen’s departure left Chiefs fans yearning for a pass rusher, and Kansas City found one with the fifth-overall pick of Glenn Dorsey, but he won’t provide pressure from the defensive end position.

Johnston, like Allen, was a second-day selection from. When Herm Edwards described his new defensive end Sunday, Johnston sounded an awful lot like Allen.

“He’s got a lot of potential,” said Edwards. “He can run, he’s a good-looking guy. He’s got a great motor.”

The comparisons between Johnston and Allen aren’t overwhelming (Johnston didn’t win the Buck Buchanan award as Allen once did) but they both managed to catch a touchdown pass last season.

Johnston turned down an opportunity to play at Colorado State and Arizona on his way to Gardner-Webb. He started seven games as a true freshman at outside linebacker, but moved to defensive end as a sophomore, starting all 11 games at his new position and earning a first-team selection to the All-Big South squad.

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