CUMBERLAND — Detroit Lions running back Ty Johnson was recognized Tuesday not only for his accomplishments on the field, but also for his work off the field as a role model for young people.
Allegany County Sheriff Craig Robertson presented Johnson, a 2015 graduate of Fort Hill High School, with a glass trophy during a gathering at the Allegany County Office Complex.
"I want to make a special presentation award to Ty. It is not because of your position in the NFL, but it doesn't hurt any," joked Robertson. "But, it's because of your relationships with kids in this area. You are at a time when kids look up to you and can learn from you and hopefully follow in your footsteps so they don't take the wrong path."
Prior to presenting the award, Robertson went over Johnson's career at Fort Hill, the University of Maryland and his first season with the Detroit Lions. Robertson said Johnson had 63 carries for 273 yards for Detroit, along with 24 pass receptions for 109 yards.
Robertson said the trophy for being a role model and mentor has only been given out twice in the last 10 years.
"This is presented to Ty Johnson in recognition of your commitment and dedication to mentoring students in Allegany County by following your dream," Robertson said. "A dream of continuing to help local Allegany County students by helping them take the right path and seek out their own dream. In a time where family structure has drastically changed over the years, there is a tremendous need for people, for kids of all walks of life, to look up and see that life is too precious to waste. Ty, I believe I can speak for the majority of Allegany County that we are all proud of you."
Johnson said he appreciated the honor.
"I enjoy coming back home," he said. "It's good to see everyone. ... I thank the area for supporting me."
Johnson said it is good to give back because "you never know what people are going through and whose life you might impact."
With the Super Bowl between the San Francisco 49ers and the Kansas City Chiefs coming Feb. 2, Johnson was asked for his thoughts.
Johnson said the Lions did not play San Francisco, but did play Kansas City.
"They are both solid teams," Johnson said. "We almost beat Kansas City ... they only beat us by 4 points (34-30 on Sept. 9). We had a few turnovers that they capitalized on. They're a good team. We were up on them the whole game but until the fourth quarter. I think it will be a good game. Patrick Mahomes is a great quarterback. They both have solid defenses and solid offenses."
Johnson said he is doing some light training while in Cumberland.
"I'm working out here right now, then I will be in Texas for two months of training there. I report back (to Detroit) on April 28 for working out until around summer. Then, I may go on vacation, try do something before I report for the (2020) season."
Follow staff writer Greg Larry on Twitter @GregLarryCTN.