Texans S Justin Reid says Lonnie Johnson is becoming comfortable in new defense

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No one was happier for Houston Texans safety Lonnie Johnson when he got his first career interception than Justin Reid.

On the first offensive play for the Buffalo Bills, Johnson picked off quarterback Josh Allen and returned the takeaway to the Bills’ 13-yard line.

Reid was pleased to see Johnson get the pick after 33 games since Houston drafted him in the second round in 2019.

“Everybody’s been saying that since he got here, ‘When are you going to finally join the club?’ So he finally got him one,” Reid said. “Didn’t take him long, first play of the game. That was exciting. I was happy to see him do it.”

According to Reid, the interception was the boost the Texans needed to take on an AFC Championship runner-up from a season ago.

He was really hype,” said Reid. “That gave the whole sideline a lot of juice and momentum, so it was a big play to start the game.”

Part of what has helped Johnson start making plays is his comfort level in the Texans’ new scheme. After the first two years of playing in a 3-4 scheme, and spending his rookie year as a cornerback, Johnson is playing in a Tampa 2 scheme with new defensive coordinator Lovie Smith.

“He’s become more comfortable in the system,” said Johnson. “You’ve got to remember, this is his second year playing safety. A lot of times your biggest growth is after you have a full year in and you come around in the second time around, things start to make sense a little bit better and a little bit easier, and you’re able to build a little bit more. You’re starting to see that happen.”

The Texans are hopeful it happens more for Johnson as they take on the New England Patriots Sunday at 12:00 p.m. Central Time at NRG Stadium.