Johnson poised to help Holmes

Larry Johnson continues to improve as an RB, and will be running behind an offensive line with plenty of experience.

Updated: August 12, 2005, 12:05 PM ET
By John Clayton | ESPN.com
RIVER FALLS, Wis. -- Here are five observations on the Kansas City Chiefs, based on their Aug. 3 practice:

1.
Larry Johnson continues to improve as a running back, and may get time in the backfield with Priest Holmes. As a rookie in 2003, Johnson never got on the good side of Coach Dick Vermeil, who didn't really want a running back in the first round. Plus, Johnson didn't feel comfortable in the offense. Last year, Johnson showed promise by rushing for 581 yards and having a 4.8 yard average.

Johnson's play prompted the Chiefs to not re-sign Derrick Blaylock, who went to the Jets. Johnson continues to run with more authority, particularly in the red zone, where he scored nine times as a runner. Priest Holmes is the focal point of this offense, but the coaching staff is starting to look at ways to put Johnson on the field with Holmes to cause match-up problems.

John Clayton

NFL senior writer

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