Jim Johnson, the former defensive coordinator of the Philadelphia Eagles, died today at the age of 68, according to reports. He'd been fighting cancer for a few months. There is far too much to say about Jim Johnson. He was a good man as well as a fantastic football coach. Here are some highlights:
He had a reputation for being one of the meanest coaches in the NFL during his days with the Washington Redskins. But he also had a reputation for having players' backs. After Mike Shanahan left to become the Denver Broncos' head coach, he hired Johnson away from Washington to be his offensive coordinator. When he was fired by the Broncos after one season, they went with their own guy instead - Joe Thomas - but it wasn't because of anything Johnson did or didn't do. It was purely based on who their new coach was going to be. Same thing that happened with Andy Reid in Kansas City and then with Chip Kelly in Philadelphia. Whoever the boss is, that's who gets promoted. Never mind what anyone else thinks.
He started out as a line coach for the Chicago Bears, then became an assistant coach for the University of Colorado before joining the Redskins as a defensive coordinator in 1998. During his time there, the team won two Super Bowls - one in 1999 and another in 2007 - both times beating John Elway's Denver Broncos. They also made the playoffs nine out of ten years he was there.
Jimmy Johnson is a retired football player, coach, and football commentator. The broadcaster is well-known for his coaching stint with the Dallas Cowboys of the National Football League. Before becoming the coach of the Cowboys, he was the quarterback for Miami University in Oxford, Ohio.
He played in the NFL from 1967 to 1979, including one season with the Miami Dolphins. After retiring as a player, he went on to become an assistant coach for the Cowboys and then took over as their head coach after Tom Landry resigned in 1983. During his tenure, he led the team to three consecutive NFC East titles and appeared in the 1986 Super Bowl loss to the Chicago Bears. He was fired by the Cowboys after finishing second in the league's regular season standings in 1987 and not making the playoffs.
After leaving the Cowboys, he became the coach of the Arizona Cardinals but was fired after one season. He later worked as a television analyst for CBS and ESPN before retiring in 2009. His overall record as a coach was 117-77-1.
He has been voted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame since 1999.
Greg Johnson, a former NHL player, died on July 7. Getty Images/Noah Graham According to a police investigation, former Nashville Predators captain Greg Johnson's death was an apparent suicide, according to the Detroit News. According to a Rochester Police report released on Wednesday, Johnson was discovered by his wife soon before 10 a.m. on July 7. She said that he had been awake for several hours and had been going through financial documents before she woke him up for the day.
He was 49 years old. The cause of death was determined to be a gunshot wound to the head. Police say there are no signs of trauma to any part of his body except for one hand which appears to have been trapped under something as he stood at his desk with the gun in it.
After leaving the Preds in 1999, Johnson played for the New York Islanders, Boston Bruins, and Tampa Bay Lightning before retiring in 2012. He returned to Nashville in 2014 to serve as an assistant coach under Barry Trotz.
"We are deeply saddened by this news," the Predators said in a statement. "Greg was a two-time Stanley Cup champion with the Predators and a key member of our team during its most successful era. His work ethic and dedication to learning new techniques were admired by everyone who worked with him. This is a difficult time for his family and friends, and we offer our support during this difficult period."
Following O'Brien's departure to the NFL on January 1, 2014, Johnson was named interim head coach. Johnson departed Penn State after 18 years to become an assistant head coach and defensive line coach at Ohio State later that month.
Johnson had a significant impact on Penn State football during his tenure as a coach. He is one of only three coaches in program history with 100 or more wins (O'Brien being the other). Under Johnson, Nittany Lions football reached the postseason for the first time since 1999. He also helped recruit several high-profile players to campus including Michael Bennett, Marcus Allen, and Brandon Short.
In October 2013, it was announced that Johnson would not return as the team's defensive line coach following the season. He signed a five-year contract worth $2.5 million with Ohio State in February 2014.
During his time at Penn State, Johnson went 82-28 (.746 winning percentage).
He arrived at Penn State in 1994 after two seasons as an assistant coach at Temple. Before coming to State College, he served as the defensive ends coach at Boston College from 1992 to 1993 and at Navy from 1990 to 1991. Johnson played college football at Army where he was a four-year letterwinner and starter at defensive end. He finished his career with 43 tackles and six sacks.