Former Georgia Tech standout Calvin Johnson, who will hold his third annual “Wide Receiver Camp” for high school football players in the Atlanta area on July 24, says losing “is not easy on anyone” with the NFL’s Detroit Lions.
Johnson plays for arguably the worst franchise in professional football. In Johnson’s rookie season of 2007, the Lions showed some promise, posting a 7-9 record. The next year was a disaster at 0-16, while Detroit improved to 2-14 last season but still holds a 20-game road losing streak.
Losing has been somewhat of a culture shock for Johnson, who never played for a losing team at Georgia Tech or Sandy Creek High.
“It’s different, first coming into [that type of situation],” Johnson said. “Losing is not easy on anyone. There are guys on our team that put in a lot of hard work …”
Johnson said he prefers to dwell on the Lions’ future. He said he’s “100 percent” after being bothered with a sore knee last year. Former Georgia quarterback and 2009 No. 1 draft pick Matthew Stafford has shown promise, and the Lions have been active in the free-agency market.
“It has been like night and day in the couple of years I’ve been in Detroit,” Johnson said. “To see the amount of talent we’ve got this year … mainly on the defensive line, which has been stepped up tremendously.
“That will be great because other teams won’t be able to run as well against us. That will definitely give our offense more time on the field.”
NOTE ABOUT CAMP: Johnson’s camp, scheduled for July 24, is sponsored by his foundation and is free to high school players from grades 9-12. To request an application packet, send an e-mail to Arica Johnson at firstname.lastname@example.org. The deadline for the application is July 9.