Josh Johnson to start at QB for Buccaneers

Former Oakland Tech star Josh Johnson will get his first NFL start Sunday at the Washington Redskins. Johnson took over for a struggling Byron Leftwich in Sunday’s 24-0 loss to the New York Giants and in his first NFL action, he was 4-of-10 for 36 yards and also ran once for 15 yards. Johnson had been listed as No. 3 on the Bucs depth chart behind 2009 first-round draft choice Josh Freeman, but he leaps over the rookie to take over as the starting QB for now.

Johnson was the least heralded at the time of a talented crop of East Bay quarterbacks that featured Monte Vista’s Kyle Wright and San Ramon Valley’s Sam Keller. Wright went on to an up-and-down career at Miami and Keller had his moments at Arizona State before eventually transferring to Nebraska after losing the starting job. Wright and Keller have briefly spent time on NFL rosters but have not seen action.

Jimmy Durkin

Jimmy Durkin is a sports writer for the Bay Area News Group.

  • Creme de la creme

    I know Josh will play well after few years of sitting and learning….Now the opportunity to start….Very happy for him…OT

  • johnny

    Dennis Dixon was also in that class and he has had the best football career to date out of all of them

  • An easy argument could be made that Johnson has had a better career to date. Dixon was more heralded in college because he was at a bigger name school and what he did came against tougher competition, but statistically Johnson had a better college career. (Johnson actually had more TD passes as a senior than Dixon had in his career. Overall, Dixon had 5,129 yards and 38 TDs; Johnson had 9.312 and 108 TDs.) NFL-wise, Dixon has thrown just one pass while Johnson is getting set for his first NFL start. Really the only advantage Dixon has is owning a Super Bowl ring and, taking nothing away from him, it’s not as if he was out on the field earning the ring.

  • Did you know that Dixon never beat De La Salle in 4 championship games in high school? He joins Matt Leinhart(Mater Dei) in that club.

  • He only quarterbacked three of those games, his sophomore through junior years.

  • ProudParent

    Johnson had great numbers, yes, but Dixon was actually talked about in the Heisman discussions his senior year until his injury… gotta go with Dixon having the better college career on that alone.

  • And Johnson was a Walter Payton award finalist, which is the equivalent to the Heisman for FCS schools. Had Johnson put up his numbers for a I-A school, he would’ve been in the Heisman discussion. Yes, his numbers would’ve gone down some playing against I-A schools, but how much, we don’t know. I’m not saying Johnson definitely had a better college career than Dixon, just that we can’t make that judgement. It’s not overwhelming for either player. And since we’re speaking of overall career and Johnson is about to start in the NFL, he has to get the edge. Their college careers cancel each other out and he’s got the edge for now in the pros.

    My hope is that both become starting QBs in the NFL (anybody else think their hometown Raiders could use them?) and we can have this discussion 10 years down the road about who has been a better starting QB in the league. For now, we’ll see how Josh does on Sunday.

  • Creme de la creme

    Well all I have to say is watch out for Josh to have a good game this weekend….

  • biggreen

    Oakland Tech Representin!