Trumaine Johnson must step up to replace injured E.J. Gaines


The St. Louis Rams broke the news last Sunday that their standout 2nd year corner back, E.J. Gaines will miss the rest of the season due to a foot injury suffered in training camp. Gaines was a steal for the Rams in the sixth round of the NFL Draft. Gaines would show up in a big way for 15 regular season games last year, as former starting cornerback Trumaine Johnson suffered a sprained MCL injury. Now, the roles are being reversed.

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In 2014 Johnson would suffer an injury to allow, Gaines to take the starting role and hold onto it heading into this years training camp. However, with the recent injury news, Johnson has the ability to take back his starting job. With the starting spot learning towards Johnson already, he must step up as Marcus Roberson, LaMarcu Joyner and Imoan Claiborne are beginning to crowd the defensive backfield.

Johnson showed Friday night in the Rams preseason matchup against the Oakland Raiders that he is more than ready to step up and replace Gaines. Johnson played two series, but that was all he needed to show head coach Jeff Fisher he means business in 2015. Johnson would finish with two passes defend, a tackle and a goal line interception against quarterback Derek Carr.

If Johnson can continue his success he had in last week’s preseason game, combined with ball-hawk Janoris Jenkins the duo could be very effective. Fisher addressed the media about Johnson and also commented on the rest of the secondary.

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"“Tru is off to a great start,” Fisher said. “Marcus is playing well, and LaMarcus also is doing a good job for us, and Jenks is Jenks. We’ve got a good group, fortunately.”"

Last year in nine regular season games, Johnson recorded thirty three solo tackles, with three interceptions and one of those returned for a touchdown. Another reason why Johnson must step up in the upcoming season, is his contract. After the 2015 season, Johnson will become a free-agent. Johnson has the potential to become a top corner back for the Rams for a very long time, but it all comes down to if he can have a productive season. It’s your move Trumaine Johnson.