Brian Johnson says it was 'mania' on the field after game-winning kick


Before Brian Johnson kicked the game-winner to beat the Raiders on Sunday, he estimates that probably two-thirds of his Washington teammates didn't even know his name.

After? When Johnson's 48-yard field goal sailed through the uprights, effectively giving Washington a 17-15 victory, for its fourth straight in as many weeks, Johnson described the scene on the field as "mania."

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"It was mania," he told 106.7 The Fan's Grant Paulsen and Danny Rouhier on Monday. "I couldn't see straight because every time I turn around, there was a different person hugging me. It was my first time meeting them and they were just hugging me, so it was pretty crazy."

The feeling was obviously mutual. Only being with them since Tuesday, when he signed with Washington five days before game day, Johnson wasn't familiar with his new teammates, either.

"I'm sure there's probably more than two-thirds of the team that, before that kick, had no idea my name and stuff," he said. "But the guys in the lockers next to me and everything, I got to know their names a little bit. I'm still getting some of the names down. I've had a lot of them thrown at me this past week. Still getting the names down, but hopefully I'll get 'em down this week."

"The plane ride there, they were looking at me like, 'Who the hell is this?' But on the plane ride home, yeah, everyone's giving me fist bumps and stuff. The plane ride home was awesome. It was unreal."

The 24-year-old rookie's had an uneasy welcome to the NFL, bouncing around quite a bit since going undrafted out of Virginia Tech last spring.

"It's been a hectic rookie season for me," Johnson said. "I spent the first five weeks of the season on the Bears practice squad, then got claimed by New Orleans and spent six weeks there, and then was released from New Orleans and got signed back to the Bears practice squad."

All that movement despite being a perfect 8-for-8 on field goals in four games this season prior to joining Washington.

"And I was only on the Bears practice squad for a week, and then got called at halftime of the Monday night game by Washington last week," he explained. "So I've kind of been hotel hopping this season, but it is different, just kind of every time you go into a new organization, getting a feel for everything.

"Because the way that every organization operates a little bit differently, so kind of catching up to speed. And in my position, you have to catch up to the speed of everything quick, because I only got to Washington on Tuesday."

Needing to drain his first kick for Washington in the unfriendly confines of Allegiant Stadium, Johnson confirmed that the Raiders faithful were giving him the business as he warmed up for the game-winner on the sideline.

"I can definitely confirm that," he said. "You get that, especially as a kicker. The fans love talking to the kickers, because you're over there and there's really no escaping them because we're hanging out there for a while, so the fans get to know you. But I've dealt with it before, dealt with it in college and everything. It's just zoning them out and everything. Every now and then, they'll say something, I'll just get a little smirk on my face, just because sometimes they do have some clever lines."

Now, despite growing up a Ravens fan in Bethesda, Md., Johnson has instantly become a hometown hero for the Washington Football Team.

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