Q&A with Rutgers LG Kaleb Johnson

PISCATAWAY, N.J. -- Rutgers senior left guard Kaleb Johnson sits down with ScarletReport.com for a question and answer session. Johnson addressed changes in the running game, playing tackle in the past and his thoughts on Tulane inside.

ScarletReport.com -- With Paul James going down, how badly do you feel for him personally?

Senior left guard Kaleb Johnson -- “Injuries are something that’s an unfortunate part of this game but we’ve got to keep moving,”

SR.com -- What’s your confidence level in the rest of these guys picking up the slack for him?

KJ -- “I have nothing but confidence in them. They jumped right in there and had 100-yard games. Going forward, a guy like [Justin] Goodwin and a guy like Desmon [Peoples], they’re already in the rotation. They’re trying to continue what they’re doing. These younger guys are going to come in and show that we have some of the best running backs in the country.”

SR.com -- Can Goodwin and Peoples be just as dangerous as P.J.?

KJ -- “I know they are. It’s just going to be up to them to go out and perform.”

SR.com -- What are your focuses in moving on to Tulane?

KJ -- “We just came in on Sunday ready to make improvements. We ran the ball very well in the Navy game, but we still left a lot of yards on the table.”

SR.com -- How important is it to not look beyond Tulane with Michigan coming next?

KJ -- “It’s never about the future opponents. If we were playing Alabama in two games, I wouldn’t be thinking about it. It’s always about us. It’s about us focusing on what we need to do against Tulane.”

SR.com -- Have you looked at Tulane on film yet?

KJ -- “Yes I have. They’re defense is a good one, and we have to play our game.”

SR.com -- What do you remember about playing them two years ago?

KJ -- “That’s when I was playing tackle. I know they had a defensive end that was pretty good, but I don’t remember how much pressure they got. I’ve played so many games that I don’t remember much from it.”

SR.com -- You probably remember playing at the Super Dome.

KJ -- “Yeah. That was awesome. I liked the city, but it was rough for them. They were still suffering from the hurricane and stuff like that.”

SR.com -- Is J.J. Denman taking advantage of his reps at right tackle?

KJ -- “Yes, definitely. He’s matured over the last couple of months as a player and as a person. The sky is the limit for this kid. Ever since he first got here, I knew he was going to be one of those guys. He has great feet. He as good hands. If he continues to work, he’s going to be one of our best offensive linemen.”

SR.com -- How do you feel about being a guard after all of the time you played at tackle? Do you have a preference?

KJ -- “I’m a football player. Wherever they need me to play is my favorite position. I’ll play quarterback if they need me to. I love football. I’ve never thought that I am perfect. I look at everything as an opportunity to work.”

SR.com -- You’ll play quarterback, but what about cornerback? Do you have the hips?

KJ --“I think I can lock people down. I was telling Nadir [Barnwell] that I could take his spot any day.”

SR.com -- Was it good to see Gary Nova bounce back after Penn State?

KJ -- “It’s a weekly process. Every week he’s working as hard as he can do win the game. We’re doing the little things and it was good to see that work out last week.”


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