49ers sign QB Josh Johnson

The 49ers just announced that they have signed quarterback Josh Johnson.  He was the Bengals’ backup quarterback last season, but they replaced him this offseason by signing Jason Campbell and drafting A.J. McCarron.

Do you like the Johnson signing? I do. I think he has the ability to beat out Blaine Gabbert for the 49ers’ No.2 QB job.

Johnson turns 28 on Thursday. He went to Oakland Tech with Marshawn Lynch, and started two seasons under Jim Harbaugh at the University of San Diego. Johnson’s senior season,  he threw 42 touchdowns and just one interception under head coach Ron Caragher.

This article has 119 Comments

    1. No. I think Johnson is promising but he has attempted just 177 passes in his career, and none since 2011.

      1. This makes no sense what so ever,

        He really has no NFL experience, he’s a bit too old to develop so don’t know how he fits in the Whole Grand Scheme of things. The 49ers are just going to cut him in the summer.

        Head Scratcher for sure.

        1. Folsom,
          J.Johnson’ chances of making the team could hinge on whether the team goes with 3 QB’ this coming season.

          Also, J.Johnson does have NFL experience. Having been through the rigors of TC’s and starting about 5 games in his career certainly qualifies him as a veteran pro (as Harbaugh will attest).

          1. @AES & claude balls

            I guess my point is JJ doesn’t really have “much” NFL experience so if the 49ers needed another arm then why not get somebody with Body Of Work?

            1. I got you Folsom.
              The body of work player in this case is likely Blain Gabbert.
              J.Johnson is a Harbaugh understudy (San Diego St.) and no doubt Harbaugh still has a strong tie with his former college QB.

              I was surprised with the signing myself, but having another ‘arm’ (in this case a familiar one) in TC has its benefits.

        2. Folsom:

          It could be as simple as Harbaugh doing a favor for a former player he likes, respects and trusts. The 49ers need multiple arms for training camp. Why not sign a guy you like, respect and trust to be one of them? Plus, Johnson will get a chance to audition for other teams during the preseason games.

          1. The 49ers don’t need five arms, though. They just need four, and they already had four. Maybe Kory Faulkner needs a lot of development and isn’t ready even to be a camp arm. When the Packers brought in Kurt Warner as an undrafted free agent, he requested not to play in team drills. The speed of the game was overwhelming to him at first.

            1. Sorry, I can’t hear you over the sound of 23jordan’s [redacted].

              Maybe it’s an OTA thing then. It’s all just speculation on my part. Thanks for the Kurt Warner story. I had never read/heard that before.

        1. He’s competing for a job. Whether that’s backup or 3rd string I don’t know, but the team has it’s starting QB and that was reinforced when they didn’t draft one.

        2. Only if his real name is T.Brady, P.Manning or R.Wilson.
          Other than that, yeah, he’s just competing to get a job.

  1. I always liked him.
    And I think they always liked him too…for the right price that is.
    Must be the right price.

  2. Grant:

    That was easily my best comment in weeks. It was good-natured, accurately summed up jordan’s feeling for JJ and contained no bad words. You have to let it through.

      1. I believe he referred to a body part of Jordo resembling the Washington Monument at the thought of JJ’s return….

      2. He said; “I can hear 23Js elation from here.”

        Although I might have remembered the wrong word after 23J’s name.

      1. Do you mean “try again” as in post the identical comment again, or “try again” as in make the same point, but in a much less funny way?

            1. The erection of Notre Dame’s Campus Crossroads Project will attract many more visitors to the stadium…..

        1. Never mind.

          What do you mean it’s not a PG word? The term “erectile disfunction” is used in commercials aired during afternoon NFL games

            1. post it again and leave out the word which everyone already knows anyway. We can just all fill in the blank.

  3. I don’t mind the signing. I don’t think he will beat out gabbert for the number 2 job though. Blaine played on a horrific team very similar to how Alex smith came in the league. Gabbert is 24 years old with his best football ahead of him. If they keep 3 QBs he will make the team.

    1. No kidding!
      First we trade for one…then we draft one…then we sign one as a FA.
      What is this, National Johnson Month???

  4. Josh Johnson is a fine signing to add some competition in camp, but he’s not about to take this team over the top. Won’t mean much for the 49ers chances this season.

  5. great to have another experienced arm in camp. He has some familiarity with the offense and is comfortable with Harbaugh.

    Johnson had accuracy issues last year. He barely beat out John Skelton on the Bengals. The Niners chose not to keep Johnson for some reason even though he seems to be an ideal fit as a back up to Kaepernick.

    I wouldn’t discount Gabbert too much. Yes he was a horrible starting QB. But then I think being developed by the Jags would screw up most QBs. Obviously Baalke and Harbaugh think there’s something there to work with. I do think he has some tools (decent arm, decent mobility…not a scrambler)…but I think he’s obviously a reclamation project that may take some time. The question is if he will develop fast enough and if he is beaten out for the #2 spot, is he too expensive too keep around to develop as a #3?

  6. I think most on this board would agree that Johnson should have been the #2 in 2012. Water under the bridge but at least he’s back and he certainly improves our depth at QB.

    1. “I think most on this board would agree that Johnson should have been the #2 in 2012.”

      No, I think only you would put Johnson over Kaepernick.

      1. Exactly. No way Johnson would have been as successful as Kaepernick in 2012. Alex would still be our starting QB if Johnson had been the #2.

        However, you can make the argument he should have been kept as the #3.

      2. Jack,

        I’m sure you know that if I felt that way now I would say so. Kap has proven to be the superior player. Just not a an elite QB. Don’t stir the pot son. Stay in your lane jr blogger!

    2. Evidently their is another Neal on here, I agree with Grant,Johnson has a good shot of being #2. He should of been #3 in 2012, over baby Bree’s.

  7. They should have just drafted a better QB, but I thought they should have drafted a better WR prospect.
    I just hope this isn’t the first of many Harbaugh/Baalke QB signings and cuts like last year. They are all just different varieties of suck. QB is the most difficult position to learn and to translate talent into production. I think we would see more by picking one and committing to developing them than frenetic speed-dating.

  8. I half expected Grant to say this QB signing (Johnson) meant that the Niners have lost confidence in Kap . LOL
    Give up the Kap and JH and overall Niners hate Grant, you will feel better and maybe the players and coaches will stop shunning you around headquarters ! Maybe ?

  9. after the last playoffs……I am convinced Ckone is the best QB pound for pound in the NFL……

    I don’t need him to stay in the pocket or only read half of the field…….he is by far the most dangerous QB in the NFL……….

    that taste of seafcks is finally fading off……..niners 2015 nfl champs

  10. Kiper……

    Bruce Ellington, WR, San Francisco

    Total steal. And he can stretch the field. South Carolina passers completed 19-of-30 of 15-plus yards to Ellington last year, per ESPN Stats & Information, the best rate in the SEC.

    good stuff…….

  11. note to Coach Harbaw:

    imagine… a San Diego reconnect with
    (a) one of your USD team members
    but not with
    (b) “the City of Coronado.”

    Priorities, huh?

  12. Johnson hasn’t stuck with a team in years. He is minimally talented and is only here because the coach likes him and is throwing him a bone. Did the same thing before. He’ll be gone come September…

    1. ‘sort of like Plunkett and Tittle winning championships after the niners threw them under the bus….

  13. Johnson hasn’t stuck with a team in years. He is minimally talented and is only here because Coach threw him a bone. He’ll be gone in September…

  14. In the video of Faulkner he appears to have a nice touch on his pass and good vision. He commonly drops the ball to his receiver in the middle of defenders and seems to put it where only the receiver has a chance at it.

    Although I didn’t notice his end zone fade…He’s still an interesting prospect.

    1. I told you….

      He seems like a solid prospect. Strong arm, accuracy, athleticism. And from the sounds of it he seems like he was on no ones radar except Harbs.

      1. He’s not accurate. He has poor ball placement. He threw into enormous windows at SIU and still completed just 59 percent of his passes. He also has very little experience under center. He also needs to learn the 49ers’ play book. Josh Johnson is ahead of Faulkner in those areas.

        1. He’s an undrafted FA taken because of raw talent they believe they can possibly develop. He’ll be a PS guy if he shows anything in TC.

              1. /shrug

                From the video It’s hard to say but I wouldn’t venture his arm strength is anything to write home about but I love his ball placement and he also takes smart chances. He doesn’t always on the throws but on many you can see that he releases before the player is open.

                I’m also fully aware that this is but a single highlight film and all Im still saying is that I like him as a prospect. More so then most of the other guys on the team.

        2. He’s always thrown right at 60% and you’re watching a different tape if you think all those throws are into huge windows.

          He also has very little experience under center And how much experience did Kaepernick have under center?

          He also needs to learn the 49ers’ play book. Josh Johnson is ahead of Faulkner in those areas.
          Stop being so defensive, I get it that you’re sensitive to everyone picking on you the past couple days but settle down. I wasn’t making the case he was better then anyone I just said I like him as a prospect.

        3. His ball placement issue looks to me like it’s from a lack of anticipation. He’s getting the ball into the hole, but he’s often late with it which is forcing the receiver to have to break stride.

          1. I see what you are talking about but it also looks like he’s putting the ball where only the receiver can get it. Might change the WR’s path but it also doesn’t lead to an INT.

            1. You’re right. He just needs to get the ball out of his hands quicker. It’s timing more than accuracy if that makes sense.

  15. Damn….Aaron Hernandez wacked 2 more people in 2012. The body count keeps on growing. Glad we didn’t need a TE in 2010.

  16. Off topic:

    There are certain movie genres that regardless of how bad I can’t get enough and you can usually count me in for any movie that involves a big a ss something tearing up a city. The problem is, they’re always terrible and not always in the good way. The last good Godzilla movie was probably Son of Godzilla in ’67. Since then the franchise has been rehashed in every way but good. Cloverfield is the only movie that has come close and it was actually pretty decent but the monster didn’t have the charisma or personality that our lizard king possesses. Pacific Rim was a dreadful attempt at merging Transformers and Godzilla and if there was any decency in the world all copies of that movie would be deleted and the blank discs would be shot off towards the sun.

    With that said I couldn’t be more excited about this latest version of G to the Z. The iconic roar sends all the good shivers right up my spine and I think I’ll probably cheer the first time he spits his ice flame on some poor subdivision.

    Here’s to a good old fashioned popcorn movie done right!

      1. Big G stepping on Minya’s tail is one of my favorite scenes. The part when Minya throws a tantrum and Godzilla just walks off dragging him by his tail is classic also.

      2. “War of the Garg’s”
        Sure, classic. War of the Monsters you’d probably enjoy also.

  17. 20/20 is so great in hindsight……….. here’s his review from 2011, similar to Kap?
    With Stanford quarterback Andrew Luck’s return to school, the name that is emerging as the top quarterback prospect in the 2011 NFL Draft is Missouri’s Blaine Gabbert.

    With all the buzz being about the likes of Heisman Trophy winner Cam Newton, Arkansas’ Ryan Mallett and Washington’s Jake Locker as far as quarterbacks are concerned, Gabbert gets lost in the shuffle among these established names. However, Gabbert may be a diamond in the rough for an organization looking to build around a franchise quarterback.

    Gabbert possesses a strong arm that helps him complete throws to any area of the field. At 63 percent accuracy in 2010, Gabbert acquits himself well in the spread offense at Missouri despite not completing the arbitrary 70 percent that is the typical benchmark among top tier quarterback prospects. However, his throwing motion produces a tight spiral with the ability to place the ball over the receiver’s shoulder, hitting him in stride.

    Gabbert, at 6’5″ 235 pounds, possesses the size desirable among quarterback prospects. This does not hamper his ability to move outside the pocket. However, Gabbert has developed a habit of pulling down the ball and running with it too soon at times instead of waiting for the play to develop.

    A concern about Gabbert’s field vision is in Missouri’s spread style offense, the quarterback looks primarily for the deep ball rather than reading through his progressions and check down to another receiving option. Gabbert will have to learn to see the entire field instead of letting his rocket arm unload each and every time.
    Given the choice, which quarterback prospect would you build a team around?
    Blaine Gabbert Cam Newton Ryan Mallett Jake Locker Other (Post answer in comments) Submit Vote vote to see results

    Gabbert’s mechanics are sound in that he has a quick release with a compact motion. However, another detriment of playing in a spread offense is taking snaps primarily out of the shotgun. Gabbert will have to show pro scouts that he is capable of taking snaps directly under center and produce the same accuracy while dropping back to throw.

    Gabbert is an intriguing quarterback prospect because of the raw talents that he possesses as a passer and an athlete. The spread offense may negate Gabbert’s talents in the eyes of scouts because there is not enough of a sample size in terms of seeing Gabbert as a complete quarterback.

    1. The comment about him looking for the deep ball too often is interesting. I’ve never really watched the guy play much but from what I hear is he doesn’t go deep enough and is inaccurate when he does…not sure how true that is.

  18. Any thoughts on Morgan Breslin? The guy was very productive before his injury. You don’t just compile 13 sacks in the pac-12 by luck. Pretty interesting prospect.

  19. Anyone know how to change your screen name on here ?There is another Neal and spelled exactly the way I spell my name.

    1. Real Neal,

      Just type it in the name box. Your avatar will stay because it’s linked with your email address.

  20. Don’t feel too badly if you cannot nail a draft grade or an evaluation of a prospect.

    Even the “great gel head” and self-annointed draft guru Mel Kiper initially gave the Seattle Seahawks a grade of C- for their 2012 draft of Bruce Irvin, Bobby Wagner and Russell Wilson in rounds 1, 2 and 3.

    So much for the “expert” opinion. Of course, he has gone back and erased that grade and upped it a couple of notches.

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