A four-star recruit from St. Paul’s in Covington, Johnson has bided his time for two years on the deep and talented defensive line. He redshirted in 2011 and played in one game as a reserve last season. With six linemen gone from last year’s team, Johnson seems to have a better chance to contribute this season.
The Advocate: Where are you working on the defensive line?
Mickey Johnson: I’m working with the twos right now. I see myself competing and trying to get better as we go through camp, basically learn my technique better than I have in the past. I feel like it’s time to step up.
TA: Are you playing both tackle spots?
MJ: At LSU we all have to play both sides. When I came in I was more familiar with my right-hand stance but (defensive line) coach Brick (Haley) got on me and helped me learn how to play in my left-hand stance so I could play both sides.
TA: You’ve had to wait your turn with so many guys ahead of you when you came in. How have you been able to use that time to develop even when you weren’t getting into games?
MJ: When I came in, I was redshirted and Bennie Logan, Michael Brockers and Josh Downs were the starters. I just watched them in practice and learned from them. Over on the scout team I worked against (offensive linemen) T-Bob Hebert, Will Blackwell and P.J. Lonergan and I tried to use the technique I saw (the other tackles do).
TA: Physique-wise are you more like Josh Downs than Brockers and Logan?
MJ: Physique-wise I’m a Josh Downs, Drake Nevis type — not too tall, but real low with great leverage.