When asked what Johnson brings to the Chargers offense, head coach Mike McCoy said "I think you are going to see an explosive player that can line up all over the place, and it's our job to create opportunities for him to get the ball and make plays." (Source: Chargers.com)
Fantasy Impact: Johnson was not a fantasy factor in 2014 with just 435 yards and 3 tds. However, he hauled in 71% of his targets while playing in a sub-package role. Let's not forget this is a WR that posted three consecutive 1,000 yard seasons from 2010-2012. As a polished route runner who can lineup outside or in the slot, his fantasy stock could be on the rise.
Stevie Johnson signed a three-year $10.5 million contract with the San Diego Chargers.
Fantasy Impact: Stevie Johnson had at least two possible suitors narrowed down with the Chargers and the Patriots at the forefront. Johnson opted to sign with the Chargers over the Patriots which should propel Johnson into the Eddie Royal slot receiver role. Johnson will add another weapon for Phillip Rivers to an offense that is often inconsistent.
Fantasy Impact: After signing with the 49ers last year, Stevie Johnson had a 35/435/3 line with the team last season. His production had dropped since his Buffalo days but still has value and could be the deep threat the Patriots need at receiver.
Stevie Johnson was officially release by the 49ers on Wednesday, clearing over 6 million dollars in cap space. The 49ers have left the door open for Stevie to return, but at a lower cost. (Source: CSN Bay Area)
Fantasy Impact: Depending where Stevie lands, who could be a productive WR on a team. If he comes back to the 49ers, he'll be fighting for targets behind newly signed Torrey Smith, Boldin and Vernon Davis. For his sake, he should probably look elsewhere.
Per reports, the 49ers are set to release Stevie Johnson. He carries a $6 million cap hit and the move saves $5.5 million against the 2015 cap. (Source: Dianna Marie Russini on Twitter)
Fantasy Impact: Johnson was supposed to be the 49ers' "Sherman Killer" as he had traditionally given their most vocal rival fits during Johnson's time in Buffalo. Unfortuately, Kaepernick and Johnson never got on the same page. Johnson has great moves, but questionable hands and focus. He should latch on somewhere else. This leaves the 49ers with a receiving corps of Anquan Boldin, Quinton Patton and Bruce Ellington. Expect the cap-strapped 49ers to use their first round pick on a WR.
Stevie is most likely going to be the number two or number three target in the 49ers offense next season. Crabtree is most likely going to walk in free agency, which leaves Boldin and Stevie as the only two established wideouts. (Source: Sacramento Bee)
Fantasy Impact: If Crabtree leaves the 49ers next season, that would make Stevie an instant WR2 in most leagues. He's someone to keep on your radar.
The 49ers ruled out Wide Receiver Stevie Johnson for Sunday's tilt vs. Seattle. (Source: The Sacramento Bee)
Fantasy Impact: Johnson has been on the practice report all week with his knee issue. He isn't fantasy relevant, but was going to be a key cog in any slim hope Colin Kaepernick had for being fantasy relevant. Stevie Johnson has had Richard Sherman's number anytime the two lined up against each other prior to 2014. If you have Johnson on your squad, you should have dropped him long ago, or more likely, you are already out of the playoffs, so his absence is irrelevant.
49ers third WR Stevie Johnson did not practice with a knee injury. (Source: CSN Bay Area)
Fantasy Impact: This is notable as Stevie Johnson is a notorious Richard Sherman killer. If Colin Kaepernick (and the 49ers offense) is going to be productive Sunday he should look towards Johnson early and often.
Stevie caught 3 passes for 28 yards in Thursday's game.
Fantasy Impact: You read that title right.... 28 whole yards! The 49ers offense is in absolute turmoil. Everyone on the team was just outplayed by the Seahawks and it looks like their playoff hopes may be slipping away. Stevie has little to no fantasy value for the remainder of the season.
Stevie caught 5 passes for 79 yards and a touchdown on Sunday night.
Fantasy Impact: The 49ers played catch up the entire game, but just couldn't get their offense going. The only person who could get open and actually catch passes was Stevie. He may still be behind Crabtree and Boldin on the depth chart, but he's earning Kap's trust and targets. He could be a sneaky WR3 down the stretch.
Johnson made an absolutely great touchdown catch where he leaned out towards the sideline to show off his great hand strength and still managed to tap both feet inbounds. Although his only catch of the game, it made it very apparent why the Niners jumped at the opportunity to get him this off season.
Fantasy Impact: Johnson should continue to provide good numbers as a wide receiver for deeper fantasy leagues. The targets won't be there every week, but he and Kaepernick are on the same page more often than not. He's also very crafty in his route running, so he'll have lots of opportunities against the opposing team's weaker defensive backs, because of being the number 3 WR on the depth chart.
Stevie Johnson caught 9 balls for 103 yards during San Francisco's second loss.
Fantasy Impact: With Vernon Davis out, Stevie Johnson reaped the benefits. He caught all 9 of the passes that came his way. Once Vernon comes back from his injury, Stevie will go back to being used infrequently. He's not worth a roster spot if Vernon Davis is healthy and active.
The 49ers deactivated Brandon Lloyd and Quinton Patton, which shows how much faith the 49ers have in Stevie Johnson. Johnson caught 2 passes for 26 yards and played on 26 out of 67 offensive plays.
Fantasy Impact: Stevie caught some key passes to allow the 49ers to stay in the game. He may be called upon more, if Vernon Davis is out for an extended period of time. He gets a bump, but you can't start him unless you are in a very deep league.
Both players noted that Johnson has an "unorthodox" route running style and it has caused the QB/WR combo to be off at times. As Johnson puts it, “I set up my routes a little different. It's a gift and a curse. Because it can take some time to build chemistry with quarterbacks. But at the same time, the gift is that you know you can get open.”
(Source: Sacramento Bee)
Fantasy Impact: This is mostly a case of a new QB and new WR working out the kinks. Johnson doesn't figure to be anything more than a bit player for fantasy teams this year, anyway. He's currently rated as the 76th best WR at FantasyPros.