Charles Johnson and Tyler Brayton Show Signs of Improvement

Charles BloomfieldContributor IDecember 16, 2008

So far this season, the Carolina Panthers' defensive ends, Charles Johnson and Tyler Brayton, are continuing to improve their performance on the field. Both players have combined for 48 tackles, 9.5 sacks, along with two forced fumbles. We all know that Julius Peppers leads the team in sacks, but Johnson and Brayton have done a great job playing on the left side.

Johnson (95), who was the Panthers' third round pick from Georgia in 2007, was listed as inactive for the majority of the season. The first game that he played in was a home game against Seattle. He made his first start against Dallas, replacing Peppers, who was out with an injury. During that game, he had three tackles and a batted down pass.

Brayton (96), who spent the first five seasons with the Raiders, now has a two-year contract with Carolina. This year, he has shown coach John Fox and his teammates that he belongs on this team. 

Although, he may not be a great pass rusher, but he's good at playing the run, which is why he remains the starter at left defensive end. On nickel downs, he is replaced by Johnson for pass-rush situations. 

During the preseason, both Johnson and Brayton had each recorded one sack. They also had a sack on Denver's quarterback Jay Cutler. These guys have proved their point, so far this season, which means that Peppers is not the only guy that opposing quarterbacks have to worry about.