The Oklahoman

Johnson excited by OSU’s young receivers

Senior says, Cowboys’ group is ‘full of speed’

- OSU Insider Scott Wright The Oklahoman USA TODAY NETWORK

STILLWATER — Oklahoma State senior Braydon Johnson has played the inside receiver position and the outside receiver position in his time as a Cowboy.

For his senior year, the 6-foot, 200pound Johnson is set to play in the slot, where OSU coach Mike Gundy believes Johnson's speed makes him a natural fit.

OSU vs. Missouri State

❚ KICKOFF: 6 p.m. Saturday at Boone Pickens Stadium in Stillwater (ESPN+)

Last season, Johnson had 20 catches for 248 yards and a touchdown, and now, as one of the most experience­d players in a young receiver group, Johnson hopes to make a bigger impact.

“I feel like I'm an interchang­eable receiver,” Johnson said. “I can play on the outside or the inside, wherever Coach needs me. Whatever's best for this team, that's what I'm gonna do.

“My role has definitely grown. I've taken on that leadership role and I'm just trying to hold all the other receivers accountabl­e. If we're slacking, I gotta bring them up. I gotta lead myself first so I can bring them up. I've got the most experience, so I know how everything operates. I just gotta be that next person in line to be that great example.”

Johnson in past years has been labeled as the fastest player on the team, and he sees lots of speedy players filling in around him with receivers Tay Martin, Brennan Presley, twins Blaine and Bryson Green and Jaden Bray.

“We're full of speed,” Johnson said. “Since I been here, this is probably the most speed we've had.”

Benefits of depth showing on defensive line

Sione Asi sees all the other defensive linemen around him and he breathes easy.

The backup defensive tackle knows there's not as much pressure to catch his breath and get back on the field, because the depth of the defensive line is at its peak during Asi's time at OSU.

“It actually gives me comfort, because when I come off the field, I’m not sitting on the sideline, thinking, ‘OK, I got two more plays. I gotta go.’ It’s good to know that the person ahead of me or behind me is going in, it gives you comfort to want to cheer them on and get ready for the next round when you go back in.”

Among the players who have added depth to the defensive line is Jayden Jernigan, who played a significant amount as a true freshman in 2019, then sat out last season because of health issues. Jernigan now weighs 285 pounds, down from 300 as a freshman and is listed as a backup to Brendon Evers at defensive tackle.

“It’s good to see him,” Asi said. “He definitely learned a lot in the year where he wasn’t playing at all. He took that year as a year of reflection, so just expect big things from him this year.”

17 former Cowboys make NFL rosters

Seventeen former OSU players were still standing after the final NFL cutdown day as rosters were trimmed to 53 players on Tuesday.

Five of those 17 former Pokes are in their first season out of college, including undrafted free agent Amen Ogbongbemi­ga, who made the Los Angeles Chargers’ final roster at linebacker.

Running back Chuba Hubbard made the roster in Carolina, offensive tackle Teven Jenkins — who recently underwent back surgery — made the cut in Chicago, as did cornerback Rodarius Williams with the New York Giants and receiver Tylan Wallace with Baltimore.

The other 12 former Cowboys to make rosters include: kicker Matt Ammendola with the Jets, running back Chris Carson with Seattle, cornerback Tre Flowers with Seattle, cornerback A.J. Green with Cleveland, quarterbac­k Mason Rudolph with Pittsburgh, receiver James Washington with Pittsburgh, defensive tackle Vincent Taylor with Houston, offensive guard Lane Taylor with Houston, receiver Tyreek Hill with Kansas City, tight end Blake Jarwin with Dallas, running back Justice Hill with Baltimore and defensive end Emmanuel Ogbah with Miami.

One more former Cowboy, receiver Tyron Johnson, was waived by the Chargers, but according to a report, Jacksonvil­le was set to claim him off waivers on Wednesday.

 ?? SARAH PHIPPS/THE OKLAHOMAN ?? Oklahoma State's Braydon Johnson (8) is excited by the amount of speed the Cowboys' receiver group has this year.
SARAH PHIPPS/THE OKLAHOMAN Oklahoma State's Braydon Johnson (8) is excited by the amount of speed the Cowboys' receiver group has this year.
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