It is hard to win football games without a stout offensive line. Birmingham Stallions general manager Zach Potter must agree because he continues to strengthen an already solid unit. This week the Stallions added guard Zack Johnson, the fourth new offensive lineman to join the team this USFL offseason.
Johnson (6’6, 315) played college football at FCS power North Dakota State. He was there during one of their most successful stretches from 2015 to 2019. In those five seasons, the Bison went 70-5 and won five conference championships and four national championships. Johnson played with three future NFL quarterbacks at NDSU: Carson Wentz, Easton Stick, and Trey Lance.
Johnson was a big part of the Bison’s success. He was a three-year starter, making 46 straight starts from 2017 to 2019. His sophomore season, he played right tackle and finished with an 81% technique grade and 29 knockdowns en route to helping the Bison rush for a school-record 4,083 rush yards. He was named All-Missouri Valley Football Conference Honorable Mention for his efforts.
His junior year, he only had one assignment error during the entire regular season. He finished the year with 41 knockdowns and only two sacks allowed. The school again set a record for rushing yards in a season with 4,293. For his efforts, Johnson was named a First Team All-American and First Team All-Missouri Vally Football Conference.
His senior year, Johnson shifted to play right guard. He was not any less successful there. He was again named a First Team All-American and First Team All-Missouri Vally Football Conference after registering 77 knockdowns. NDSU set a school record for rushing yards for a third straight year with him on the line, rushing for 4,601 yards. After the season, Johnson was selected to participate in the NFLPA Collegiate Bowl.
BHAM further bolsters OL w/ @Zackjohnson68. Big, strong, versatile OL who can play G or T. Only gave up 3 sacks on 700+ pass plays final 2 seasons at NDSU. Senior year had 77 knockdowns, helping NDSU rush for a school-record 4607 yds. Welcome to BHAM Zack! pic.twitter.com/GGw80yTvSv
Zack Johnson was a candidate for the 2020 NFL Draft but ended up going undrafted. He signed as a free agent with the Green Bay Packers and spent the 2020 season there. He was mostly a part of the practice squad but did see a little time on the active roster.
He spent part of the 2021 season on the Arizona Cardinals practice squad and the other part on the Denver Broncos practice squad. He spent most of the 2022 season on the Baltimore Ravens practice squad before being cut late in the year. He was then picked up by the Tennessee Titans, playing in one regular season game for them. The Titans let him go after the 2023 preseason.
Stallions have signed OL Zack Johnson (6'6, 315) out of NDSU. 3-year starter who started 46 straight games. 1st Team All-American (2x), All-MVFC 1st Team (2x), & NFLPA Collegiate Bowl participant. Signed w/ GB as UDFA in '20. Also spent time w/ ARI, DEN, BAL, & most recently TEN. https://t.co/U7qPjCXItB
Zack Johnson now lands in the USFL, where he can showcase his talent on a different stage. He joins three other offensive linemen the Stallions signed this offseason: Gray Davis, Isaac Weaver, and Christian DiLauro.
The Stallions quietly had the best offensive line in 2023, and they are shaping up to have a formidable unit once again in 2024. Kudos to Zach Potter for not resting on his laurels but continuing to scout prospective talent and bring in some of the best available players.
🐎 HORSEPOWER 🐎
This OL has quietly become one of—if not the best—OL in the league. They’re a huge part of why the Stallions offense is the #1 offense in the USFL.
It should be fun to watch Johnson and company in 2024 as the Stallions seek to three-peat. What are your thoughts on the Birmingham Stallions signing Zack Johnson? Let us know down in the comments below, or join the conversation on Discord!