The Cleveland Browns have signed former University of South Florida and Orlando Apollo D’Ernest Johnson. The move comes after Michigan State product L.J. Scott said he could be permanently done with football and was waived from the Browns roster. Johnson spent last season as a member of the Orlando Apollos in the now shuttered Alliance of American Football (AAF).
Johnson played college football at South Florida from 2014 to 2017 and became the program’s all-time leader in all-purpose yardage at 4,186, including 1,796 rushing yards, while also setting school records for a running back with 909 career receiving yards. Johnson had 29 career touchdowns at USF and was third in the AAF with 372 yards on 64 carries including two touchdowns. Johnson also reunites with former AAF teammate in QB Garrett Gilbert who has been on the Browns roster since the AAF announced its shutdown. With Duke Johnson’s future on the team still uncertain, the addition of a dual-threat like D’Ernest Johnson to the running back room is a welcome sight for fans and the coaching staff alike.