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November 7, 2017

Jah'Shawn Johnson

Lubbock, Texas

Q. Jah'Shawn, how did you occupy your time in the first half?
JAH'SHAWN JOHNSON: I just sat in the locker room, watched the game, tried to see what they were doing on offense just so I know when I get out there that I won't be behind on anything. Just try to pick up anything that I could from what they were doing and what they were showing on offense just to help me and the rest of the defense out.

Q. Kind of like watching film and watching it on TV, I assume it's more difficult to pick up stuff on TV than watching the film?
JAH'SHAWN JOHNSON: Yeah, it is. But even going when they were showing the sideline and what they were doing and just kind of seeing how they were reacting to everything, their body language on the sidelines. I was just trying to pick up anything I could and just take it out there when I got a chance.

Q. What is the most difficult part of the game coming in in the second half when everyone else has already been out there for the half and gotten some game experience?
JAH'SHAWN JOHNSON: I don't know, honestly. I was standing in front of the TV like I was in the game, honestly. I was just amped up and ready to go. I didn't really think it was the second half. I was just thinking I'm coming out of the tunnel for the first time in the first half. So it wasn't that difficult. I was just ready to go, and my teammates were ready to have me back out there and coaches as well.

Q. What do you see when you look at this Baylor offense this year?
JAH'SHAWN JOHNSON: They're very skilled. They've been a little loose with the ball, causing them to turn the ball over. But when they're on, they're on. They have, I think it's No. 15, the receiver, he's done a tremendous job of creating explosive plays for them. The quarterback has done a great job of throwing the deep ball and getting it to him in space, with little pot passes and things. Their running backs are running hard. I mean, I have a good friend of mine from high school, he plays as a running back there. So they rotate a lot. They have a lot of skill people. But, yeah, if they secure the ball, they're a great offensive team.

Q. Does that make turnovers a lot more important this week?
JAH'SHAWN JOHNSON: They're important every week. In this league, you have to create turnovers in order to win. You have to win the turnover margin, because every offense can go score with the ball at any given time. So just to give our offense the ball back in the short field helps us a lot.

Q. Coaches talk to you about the physical play, because you want to be physical and play good defense, but the amount of targeting calls we've seen this year can seem to be too physical. Have you thought about that yourself or have the coaches talked to you about that at all?
JAH'SHAWN JOHNSON: Not at all. We can't apologize for the way we compete. We won't think about it when we're out there competing. We're just playing fast, and whatever happens, happens. If they decide to rule it targeting, then we have to live with it.

We'll go in the locker room after the first half and come back the next game, or second half, sit out like I did and just bounce back. But you can't think about that on the field. That will have you playing a step slower, which you can't do in this league because they'll run by you or make you miss. So you have to keep playing fast and just go at it.

Q. You could kind of tell by your reaction, like the minute you looked up, did you find of know what was coming? I know football is such a fast game and it all kind of happens so fast. When you looked up, did you know what was coming?
JAH'SHAWN JOHNSON: Yeah, I was thinking like not again. But, yeah, the receiver kind of ducked his head, and I kind of hit him in the head with it. But it definitely wasn't aiming for it, aiming for his chest. It was just a bang-bang play. It happened. It's over with. If the play happened again, it would probably end up the same way.

You can't really, you know, kind of try to go low in that situation because I feel that hurts guys more than hitting them up high. So I was never a fan of going low. I know I'm a small guy, but I've always told my coaches I really can't do the ankle biting and things. It is what it is, but it's over with now.

Q. Obviously you were frustrated when you were leaving the field. Did you yell aback at the officials?
JAH'SHAWN JOHNSON: Yelling back at our team, just keep playing, stay positive. Just keep flying around and keep tackling. Don't worry about them making any type of calls. Just do what we're coached to do. That was about it.

I wasn't yelling at the officials. I mean, I was okay with the call. I knew what I did, and I've just got to go a little lower. But I was fine with it.

Q. With the two quarterbacks with Baylor, how are they different? I know you saw Zack last year, and you may see Chuck Brewer this year?
JAH'SHAWN JOHNSON: Brewer is more of a mobile guy. He can kind of run, but that's not what he wants to do. Both of them have strong arms and can put it in just about any space. Like I said, they're kind of loose with the ball, and we've seen that. We want to be able to attack from all angles. I know our D-line does a great job putting their hands up and tipping passes.

Once they do that, we'll come down with a few of them. We've done that a couple times now. So like I said earlier, we've got to find a way to get some turnovers and get our offense back the ball.

Q. What is the danger when people from the outside see Baylor and see a 1A team? What is the danger of meeting a team that's hitting their stride at the right time?
JAH'SHAWN JOHNSON: You can take them lightly, and they'll come out and jump on you. They played Oklahoma and West Virginia close to the end. Like I said, they create explosive plays a lot. Yeah, if they weren't turning the ball over, they'd be up there competing with everyone. I think they've only had two games that have gotten out of hand. So they fight you to the very end. You have to respect that and respect what they're doing on the offensive side and defensive side of the ball, because they have playmakers and guys that can go at it and take the ball away from you as well. You've got to treat this like any other game. They're 1-8, but they could be 8-1 or 7-2 or whatever.

Q. As a defensive player, you go against this offense every day in practice. You see them on the sideline in the game when they're out there every single game. What were they doing successfully versus Arizona State and Houston when they had the big offensive numbers that they aren't doing now?
JAH'SHAWN JOHNSON: I have no clue. I really don't pay attention much to the changes that they make. It's hard enough to make our adjustments and know what we're supposed to do. I'm 100% behind them. I trust them on any given play. I know that they'll do the right thing and try to put some points on the board and trust us to stop the other offense and give them the ball back.

Q. What broke down on that last drive with Kansas State that led to the touchdown and two-point conversion?
JAH'SHAWN JOHNSON: Just some uncharacteristic things by the back end. I, myself, kind of chased the guy across the field when I should have been more in the middle of the field. And our Hatfield safety, kind of turned it outside instead of inside like we've done the whole game, and he just kind of got in a soft spot on the zone defense, and he made a great play and a good run after the catch.

Q. (Inaudible)?
JAH'SHAWN JOHNSON: He's kind of like a basketball player out there. I mean, anywhere you put it around him, he can go get it. He's very athletic. He's a long stride guy, speeds are deceptive. You really don't see it, but he runs away from guys. He's a great playmaker for them. They like to get him the ball, and he can do great things with it.

Q. How do you feel you've progressed as a player?
JAH'SHAWN JOHNSON: I've definitely progressed in my man coverage. I don't think I've been targeted as much this year as I have been in the past. So I credit that to our coaching staff for getting us out there and doing all the drills that we do in our man coverage. So that was one of the things that I wanted to focus on the most and limit my missed tackles. I think I probably -- I'm pretty sure I'm in the single digits in that, which is a good thing with the way that we play defense and the opportunities that I have to tackle. So those are the main two things that I was focused on and just being a great leader out there and keeping everyone's head straight.

Q. With a bowl game still a possibility, how do you keep that as a goal but not make that your main focus and kind of look forward too much?
JAH'SHAWN JOHNSON: Our main focus is to go 1-0 every week. We know that everything's still in front of us. We've had some games that we know we should have won, could have won, whatever. But that's in the past. Like I said, we just want to go 1-0 every week. We let it go and we just keep flying around and stay positive at practice. Everyone's still in great spirits, because we know we have three opportunities to do and show what we're capable of.

Q. (Inaudible)?
JAH'SHAWN JOHNSON: Definitely. I've been a Cowboys fan my whole life. Watched my dad play in the old stadium. I was dreaming of playing in there. I kind of played a flag football game there at halftime. I wouldn't call it a game, but just getting out there and getting some experience.

But I've played in the stadium once in high school and twice now in college, so this will be my third time. Just anytime you get a chance to play on an NFL venue, it's special. You just want to bring your A-game and have fun.

Q. Did you go to all or most of your dad's games when you were little?
JAH'SHAWN JOHNSON: Most of the home games, yes.

Q. What do you remember about those?
JAH'SHAWN JOHNSON: Just it's exciting. The fans are crazy. Probably my favorite memories are when he caught a pick six on Peyton Manning. I was still young at the time when I was going to those games, but I definitely remember that one. That was special.

Q. I was going to say, you were probably how old?
JAH'SHAWN JOHNSON: I think about eight, nine, ten, around there.

Q. Do you have any friends who are sons of other players?
JAH'SHAWN JOHNSON: No, I didn't. No, sir.

Q. You mentioned a moment ago Terrance Williams. He's had a rough go this year, huh?
JAH'SHAWN JOHNSON: Yeah, I don't know. I think he's had some off-the-field issues to begin the season. I know he was coming off a shoulder injury, but he's kind of been in the rotation now. He's trying to get back on pace. He had a great season last year, but they have a lot of backs now that they rotate, so he doesn't really get the carries that he did last year when it was just him and the other guy.

But I talk to him a lot. He's still in great spirits as well, and he knows that he just takes advantage of his opportunities when they come.

Q. I don't know if you answered yet, but what's surprised you about Denzel Mims (Inaudible)?
JAH'SHAWN JOHNSON: Yeah, he's like a basketball player out there. He can go get it anywhere in his area. Yeah, he does a great job of creating explosive plays for them, and we'll have to limit him and try to get our hands on him to slow him down.

Q. Does he remind you of the guys they've had over the past couple of years?
JAH'SHAWN JOHNSON: Yeah, definitely.

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