Kerryon Johnson Reportedly Likely to Miss 'A Game or Two' with Knee Injury

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistNovember 19, 2018

Detroit Lions running back Kerryon Johnson (33) stiff arms Carolina Panthers free safety Mike Adams (29) during the second half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Nov. 18, 2018, in Detroit. (AP Photo/Rey Del Rio)
Rey Del Rio/Associated Press

Detroit Lions running back Kerryon Johnson has been diagnosed with a sprained knee and won't require surgery, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL Network. He will reportedly only miss "a game or two."

The rookie left Sunday's game against the Carolina Panthers with the knee injury after breaking out with 87 rushing yards and a touchdown on 15 carries. The team has a quick turnaround before its next game Thursday against the Chicago Bears.

Veteran LeGarrette Blount will likely take over the majority of early-down work while Theo Riddick gets snaps on passing plays.

While the Lions' experience at the position will help soften the blow, the injury comes right as Johnson was becoming more of a featured part of the offense.

The 21-year-old had been sharing snaps with Blount to start the season but totaled 20 touches in Week 10 and then 17 in Week 11 despite his early exit. He also scored three total touchdowns in the past two games after getting into the end zone just once in his first eight games.

There is also a stark difference in efficiency this season, with Johnson averaging 5.4 yards per carry compared to Blount's 2.3.

Still, the latest prognosis is better than any potential season-ending injury. With six games remaining in the season, Johnson will hopefully return with a few games remaining and complete a strong rookie season in the NFL.