Auburn RB Kerryon Johnson to apply to enter 2018 draft

The SEC's offensive player of the year is making the jump to the NFL.

Auburn running back Kerryon Johnson announced Tuesday he intends to apply for early eligibility into the 2018 draft.

Johnson played a key role in spearheading Auburn's push back into national prominence and a Peach Bowl berth, rushing for a conference-best 1,320 yards and 17 touchdowns in helping the Tigers secure the SEC West division title. In addition to the offensive player of the year honor, Johnson also was an All-SEC First Team selection.

In his final collegiate game, the versatile, speedy running back ran for 71 yards and a touchdown on 22 carries in a loss to UCF in the Peach Bowl on New Year's Day. There were questions whether he would play after suffering rib and shoulder injuries late in the season.

As for what comes next for Johnson, analyst Daniel Jeremiah sees plenty of potential for the running back who reminds him of Le'Veon Bell.

"I think he's one of the four best running backs in college football with Penn State's Saquon Barkley, LSU's Derrius Guice and USC's Ronald Jones," Jeremiah wrote about Johnson after scouting him in the Iron Bowl in November.

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