Considered one of the better prospects in the class, let alone pass rushers, his slide to the latter half of the first was unexpected but still placed him on a team that many had predicted he’d end up on.
Johnson started all 12 games last season and recorded 70 tackles, 18.0 for loss with 12.0 sacks, two forced fumbles, 12 quarterback hurries, two pass breakups and one fumble recovery. He led the ACC in tackles for loss and sacks, and his sacks total was the highest for an FSU defender since DeMarcus Walker in 2016. Johnson’s tackles total was the most among all Power 5 defensive linemen, and he was the only Power 5 player with at least 3.0 sacks and 4.0 tackles for loss in multiple games.
He saved his best moments for the brightest lights, registering a career-best 5.0 tackles for loss and a career-high-tying 3.0 sacks in FSU’s 31-28 win over Miami. No player in the history of the FSU-Miami rivalry has recorded more tackles for loss in one game, and his tackles for loss and sacks totals were both single-game highs for any ACC defender in 2021. In the season opener against No. 9 Notre Dame, played on Sunday night of Labor Day weekend on ABC, he made a then-career-high seven tackles, 2.5 for loss with 1.5 sacks, and was the first FSU defender to reach those benchmarks against a ranked opponent since Brian Burns in 2017. Burns was FSU’s most recent first-round selection, going 16th overall in 2019 to the Carolina Panthers.
Here are some social media reactions from NFL players, FSU personalities and analysts to the selection:
Jets won the first round!— Demetrius Stewart (@GOOODJ8) April 29, 2022
Jermaine to the Jets— (@C_Parson2) April 29, 2022
Congrats big dawg— DeMarcus Walker (@livinglegend_44) April 29, 2022
The New York Jets pick Florida State EDGE Jermaine Johnson II at No. 26 overall.— PFF Draft (@PFF_College) April 29, 2022
81.1 PFF grade in 2021 (highest by a Florida State EDGE since 2018) pic.twitter.com/G7GRT9p2U5
The Jets came away with 3 of my Top 9 players! Thought Jermaine Johnson was in the mix for them at 10, there he was at 26. They're cooking with gas!— Daniel Jeremiah (@MoveTheSticks) April 29, 2022
Many teams will regret not getting Jermaine Johnson that kid is gunna be goooood!— ♛Chandler Jones (@chanjones55) April 29, 2022
JJ… rookie of the year.— Jordan Travis (@jordantrav13) April 29, 2022
Jets just got BETTER!! Proud of you 11!!!!— Keir Thomas (@_popcool) April 29, 2022