Texas A&M safety Antonio Johnson declared today via social media that he will enter the 2023 National Football League draft. The East St. Louis, Illinois, native paces A&M this season in tackles with 7.89 takedowns per contest (71 in nine games) with three forced fumbles on the year. He has been named an Associated Press, Walter Camp and Sporting News First Team Preseason All-American, while also earning a spot on the Thorpe Award, Nagurski Trophy and Bednarik Award watch lists.

He was already considered by Pro Football Focus that outlet to be the best returning safety in the country for the 2022 season in which it already named Johnson as one of the 100 best college players in 2021 (79 stops, 8.5 tackles for loss, five passes broken up, and an interception). It was an impressive feat for Johnson considering his lack of playing time in 2020 as a true freshman (when he played primarily on special teams) as well as the fact that he was blocked from starting at one of the deep safety positions by veterans Demani Richardson and Leon O'Neal. However, it was apparent in workouts and limited game action that Johnson could be a special player and that the A&M staff needed to find a way to get him on the field.