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UCF's Storm Johnson could turn pro after Fiesta Bowl

Reinhold Matay/Associated Press
UCF running back Storm Johnson will decide after the Fiesta Bowl whether to enter the 2014 NFL Draft.

UCF junior tailback Storm Johnson, who has rushed for 1,015 yards and 11 TDs this season, says he will decide on his pro future after the Knights' appearance in the Fiesta Bowl.

Johnson told the Orlando Sentinel he will sit down with his family and UCF coach George O'Leary to discuss options after the bowl game.

Underclassmen tracker's College Football 24/7 is tracking reports of the intentions of college football underclassmen in anticipation for the 2014 NFL Draft. More ...

Johnson (6-foot, 215 pounds) shared carries with Latavius Murray (a sixth-round pick of the Raiders) last season, but the tailback job was all his this fall. Johnson began his career at Miami before transferring after his freshman season. He lacks elite speed, but he still is quick enough to turn the corner and strong enough to run between the tackles; he is a physical runner who does not shy away from contact.

This season, working with star quarterback Blake Bortles, he also proved he can be an effective receiver. Johnson has 29 receptions and three TD catches; he had 11 catches combined in his first two college seasons.

"I still feel there is more to come of me," Johnson told the Sentinel. "I haven't played at my full potential yet; the coaches know that."

One aspect that may appeal to NFL teams is Johnson's relatively light workload; he simply hasn't taken that much punishment. Johnson has carried the ball more than 20 times in a game just once in his career and averaged 16.1 carries per game this season. O'Leary prefers that his backs share the workload, and while Johnson was the unquestioned feature back, reserve William Stanback saw his role increase as the season progressed. Johnson had 51 carries in the final four regular-season games, and Stanback had 37.

Bortles also is examining his draft options, and if UCF were to lose both, it would put a big damper on the Knights' offense next season. UCF also will lose three starting linemen. But four of the top five receivers should return.

Mike Huguenin can be reached at You also can follow him on Twitter @MikeHuguenin.



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