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Report: Chiefs Trade for Texans CB Lonnie Johnson

The Chiefs acquire a former second-round pick at cornerback.

Under general manager Brett Veach, the Kansas City Chiefs have built a reputation for taking particular interest in former high-round draft picks. They most recently did so for cornerbacks DeAndre Baker and Mike Hughes, and they're doing it again to yet another one. Per Ian Rapoport of NFL Network, Kansas City is acquiring Houston Texans cornerback Lonnie Johnson Jr. for a 2024 conditional seventh-round pick. 

The Johnson move was quick-developing, as both sides were linked together less than a half-hour before the move became official. Per Aaron Wilson of Pro Football Network, Kansas City was being regarded as a "strong potential destination" for Houston Texans defensive back Lonnie Johnson on Monday afternoon.

Texans will ideally be able to trade Lonnie Johnson Jr., and the Kansas City Chiefs are regarded as a strong potential destination for former second-round draft pick from Kentucky, per league sources. The 6-2, 213-pounder intercepted career-high three passes last season.
- Aaron Wilson (@AaronWilson_NFL) on Monday, May 2, 2022 at 3:54 PM CST

Jan 12, 2020; Kansas City, MO, USA; Houston Texans cornerback Lonnie Johnson Jr. (32) returns a blocked punt for a touchdown against the Kansas City Chiefs during the first quarter in a AFC Divisional Round playoff football game at Arrowhead Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Johnson, the No. 54 overall pick (second-round selection) in the 2019 NFL Draft, is entering the final season of a four-year deal he signed as a rookie. 2022 will see him carry a cap hit of $1,659,049 with $453,028 in dead money. 

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Now 26 years old, Johnson's rookie contract is set to expire following the conclusion of the 2022 campaign and he will hit the free agent market for the first time. In three seasons as a Texan, the former Kentucky Wildcats standout has played in 44 games (19 starts). He recorded the first (and only) three interceptions of his career last season, as well as breaking up six passes and making 55 tackles on the year. 

Johnson joins a Chiefs secondary that has undergone quite a bit of renovation this offseason. Not only has Chavarius Ward departed town via free agency, but so did the aforementioned Hughes. In the 2022 NFL Draft, Veach traded up in the first round for Washington cornerback Trent McDuffie and then added Cincinnati safety Bryant Cok, Fayetteville State cornerback Joshua Williams, Washington State cornerback Jaylen Watson and Marshall safety Nazeeh Johnson to the picture from Thursday-Saturday. 

Oct 13, 2019; Kansas City, MO, USA; Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes (15) throws a pass as Houston Texans cornerback Lonnie Johnson (32) defends during the first half at Arrowhead Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports

Standing at 6-foot-2 and weighing an estimated 213 pounds, Johnson fits the prototype of what defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo looks for in his cornerbacks. He's a high-level athlete, as depicted by his Relative Athletic Score from the 2019 pre-draft process. Now, Johnson looks to latch on with Kansas City and potentially build his stock back amongst a crowded cornerback group that is undoubtedly talented heading into the 2022 season.