During the 2014 NFL Draft in May, the Buffalo Bills dealt veteran wide receiver Stevie Johnson to the San Francisco 49ers for a conditional fourth round pick. The Bills traded a future first round pick to move up in the draft to take former Clemson Tigers’ wide receiver Sammy Watkins with the fourth-overall selection.
Johnson was somewhat surprised by the trade because he thought he’d be a Bill for life.
“Honestly, I thought I’d be there at least one or two more years,” Johnson told Don Banks of Sports Illustrated. “I thought we were building a team. You see them draft a guy, but in that division you try to get as much talent as you can. But the new coaches came in and they did what they did and more power to them. Hopefully they’ll do well, but yeah, I did. I thought I’d be a Buffalo Bill for the rest of my career.”
Johnson is from San Francisco and is thrilled to be a member of the team he grew up watching and cheering for.
“The 49ers are my hometown team, but at the same time it’s still a job,” Johnson explained. “I can’t sit here and act like it’s a dream come true, because there’s a lot of work involved in making a dream come true. I just know I’ve got to put in some work before I start celebrating.”
The 49ers now have an extremely deep group of talented receivers so Johnson will obviously won’t see as many targets. He may be their fourth option behind Michael Crabtree, Anquan Boldin and tight end Vernon Davis.
Last season, Johnson made 52 catches for 597 yards and three touchdowns. In his seven-year career, the former Kentucky Wildcat has 301 receptions for 3,832 yards and 28 touchdowns.