Denver Broncos become 14th NFL team to sign veteran quarterback Josh Johnson

Josh Johnson in Baltimore last year. Credit: Kareem Elgazzar, USA TODAY Sports.
Josh Johnson in Baltimore last year. Credit: Kareem Elgazzar, USA TODAY Sports.

With Teddy Bridgewater now in Miami, and Drew Lock in Seattle, the Denver Broncos have signed quarterback Josh Johnson to back up Russell Wilson.

The Broncos are the 14th different NFL team Johnson has signed with since 2008. He was initially drafted in the fifth round by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as the backup to Josh Freeman. 

Johnson has also spent time playing in the XFL between various NFL signings. In 2020, he was named the highest-graded quarterback in the XFL by Pro Football Focus.

Johnson has appeared in 37 NFL games and started in nine. One of those starts came last season as a member of the Baltimore Ravens. He found himself as the starter in Week 16 against the Cincinnati Bengals due to Lamar Jackson having an ankle injury and backup quarterback Tyler Huntley testing positive for Covid-19. Johnson went 28-40 for 304 yards, two touchdowns, an interception, and rushed for 10 yards.

Although Johnson’s career total is 13 touchdowns and 16 interceptions, last season, he finished with 5 TDs and 2 INTs respectively and had a career-high 7.6 YPA. He gives the Broncos an experienced backup who’s proven to be a formidable option when needed.

Also on the roster is quarterback Brett Rypien, who the Broncos tendered on Sunday. When training camp opens up, the two may be in line for a backup quarterback competition.

Of course, Broncos fans are hoping they won’t have to see Johnson play and that Russell Wilson will stay healthy all year long. And, that’s a good bet considering the first time in his career that Wilson missed any game time was last year when he fractured a finger. Still, the warrior got back to the gridiron quickly, missing only five games.

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