Media impressed with former Michigan football WR Cornelius Johnson at Shrine Bowl practice

Former Michigan wide receiver Cornelius Johnson declared for the 2024 NFL draft after returning for his fifth year to help propel the Wolverines to a national title.

Johnson had 47 catches for 604 yards and one touchdown during the 2023 season and he totaled 138 catches for 2038 yards and 14 touchdowns during his five-year stay in Ann Arbor. He earned the nickname ‘Buckeye killer’ for his consistently clutch play against Ohio State, including in 2022 when he hauled in four catches for 160 yards and two touchdowns.

Johnson is competing in the Shrine Bowl, an annual NFL scouting event similar to the Senior Bowl, held in Las Vegas.

Simply put, this is huge for Johnson. Michigan obviously utilizes a run-first offense, so any chance to show scouts he can be a threat in the passing game is critical.

The 2023 Shrine Bowl was where eventual first-round pick Zay Flowers started picking up steam prior to the draft. Flowers, a Boston College product, was not widely considered a top prospect until he turned heads in Vegas. Flowers had 77 catches for 858 yards and five touchdowns during an impressive rookie campaign.

Of course, there’s no guarantee Johnson will get the same boost as Flowers (quite unlikely, actually), but this will certainly boost his stock. Heading into the offseason, Johnson was considered a late-round or undrafted free agent prospect, but he could wind up going early on Day 3 with a combine invite and good interviews. It might help that Johnson has a good friend in charge of a certain NFL team now. …

The Wolverines have four players competing in the Shrine Bowl. Along with Johnson are cornerback Josh Wallace, guard Trente Jones and guard Karsen Barnhart. Jones and Barnhart played tackle at Michigan, but are better suited to slide inside at the next level.

The Shrine Bowl will be televised on the NFL Network at 8 p.m. EST on Thursday, Feb. 1.

Story originally appeared on Wolverines Wire