June 21, 2024

On Monday night, it was revealed that safety Quinten Johnson finalized an NIL agreement with Randy Wise Automotive, becoming the designated “official defensive back of the Wise Team.”

The intriguing aspect of this development is that Johnson, who declared for the 2024 NFL Draft in February, now seems to have returned to the Michigan Wolverines, bolstering an already strong position group under Sherrone Moore’s inaugural defense in Ann Arbor.

Since 2019, Johnson has been a part of the U-M team, gradually earning playing time, particularly in 2021 when he contributed consistently on special teams. In 2022, he expanded his role to include appearances in eight games on defense, accumulating 11 tackles and one tackle for loss.

The previous season marked a significant improvement for Johnson, featuring in all 15 games on special teams and 14 games on defense. Despite not holding a starting position, he made notable contributions, notably with a crucial pass breakup against Emeka Egbuka during The Game’s fourth quarter and forcing a pivotal fumble on Jalen Milroe in the Rose Bowl.

In total, Johnson recorded 22 tackles, five pass breakups, one interception, and one forced fumble during the 2023 season.

Although he may not secure a starting position at safety this upcoming season, given the return of Rod Moore and Makari Paige, Johnson’s experience and depth will be invaluable. With 45 games under his belt at Michigan, he brings a wealth of experience unmatched by any other reserve safety on the team.

Without Johnson’s return, the Wolverines would likely have relied on players like Brandyn Hillman or Zeke Berry to step up significantly in 2024. Hillman, a true freshman last season, has seen action in nine defensive games, while Berry has played in just four. Therefore, Johnson’s return and the experience he brings could prove crucial for Michigan this fall.

Ohio State v Michigan

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