Calvin Johnson says LOSING ‘is not easy on anyone’ with NFL’s Detroit Lions

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.

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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.

Calvin Johnson (AP Photo)

Calvin Johnson (AP Photo)

“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 cjjrf@yahoo.com. The deadline for the application is July 9.

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.”
Johnson plays for arguably the NFL’s worst franchise, the Detroit Lions. In 2008, Johnson’s rookie season, the Lions became the first modern-era team to lose all 16 regular-season games. Last season, Detroit improved to 2-14, 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.”
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 cjjrf@yahoo.com
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44 comments Add your comment

Coach D

July 6th, 2010
4:32 pm

C.J. is a stud. But he’s still scared about catching over the middle, as most diva WR’s are. (I would be too!)
FIRST!

GTax

July 6th, 2010
5:06 pm

I hope Calvin and Stafford can play well this year. It’s good to see talent from both of Georgia’s top football factories do well. It’ll help both schools! Go Calvin and Matt! Except against the Falcons!

wiley

July 6th, 2010
5:31 pm

Calvin is a winner…he deserves to be in a better position. It looks like things are finally looking up for Detroit after stocking up in these last few drafts. i think Stafford and CJ are a good combo…but they still play for the dysfunctional franchise known as the Detroit Lions.

Smiley

July 6th, 2010
6:07 pm

I love Calvin> He reminds me of Barry Sanders. Ultra-talented, yet so humble. He is a class act, not a diva like T.O.

Inoccent

July 6th, 2010
7:50 pm

Um in Cj’s rookie year the Lions went 7-9 not 0-16.

wiley

July 6th, 2010
10:21 pm

Over rated? how so? He has produced touchdowns and catches at every level even when injured. He plays for a losing team and shows tremendous heart. Almost every ESPN announcer and analyst said he got snubbed out of a pro bowl season last year. If anyone is over rated on the team its MATT STAFFORD.

wiley

July 6th, 2010
10:25 pm

Year Team G Rec Yds Y/G Avg Lng YAC 1stD TD
Career Totals (Full) 45 193 3071 68.2 15.9 96 5.2 136 21

Totals after 3 years,,,
Pretty good numbers considering the injuries and lack of consistent QB play wouldn’t you say?

wiley

July 6th, 2010
10:26 pm

193 yards a game…yeah real over rated.

wiley

July 6th, 2010
10:30 pm

Yeah you can just go ahead and call me an idiot still the numbers are solid…considering the situation. 193 receptions. lol

Sports Review

July 6th, 2010
10:35 pm

[...] Atlanta Journal Constitution (blog) [...]

Dawg Power

July 7th, 2010
12:18 am

Calvin Johnson would’ve never played at Georgia. He won’t run over the middle. Good decision to go to Georgia Tech and play against those softies playing safety in the ACC.

LIONS

July 7th, 2010
7:47 am

OK wiley please learn to correctly read your stats sir at least post them correctly. You know good and well he does not average 193 yards per game, that would be legendary numbers.
Games-45, Receptions-193, Yards-3071, yards per game-68.2, Average per catch-15.9, Long-96, Yards after catch-5.2, 1st Downs-136, and touchdowns-21. Now know that I am a big Calvin fan but at least get the stats right…please.

JSS

July 7th, 2010
8:16 am

@ LIONS
Did you read the 10:30AM before you flamed that guy?

PlanB

July 7th, 2010
9:17 am

Lions,
Thanks for listing the stats in a manner to make it easier to read.
I like humble players and I like Stafford. I also pull for underdogs. Think I’ll make the Lions my second favorite team.
GO FALCONS!!!! I think they have something solid and with depth. When you see some of the good people we will have to cut, it will be more understandable.

PlanB

July 7th, 2010
9:19 am

Oh yes.
Falcons will beat NO both times in 2010.

wiley

July 7th, 2010
9:19 am

I corrected myself. Right after I posted it.

North Ave Killer Beez

July 7th, 2010
9:56 am

Why go over the middle when you can just blow by every one. Megatron Johnson baby, your a BAAAAD man.

wiley

July 7th, 2010
10:34 am

I disagree sorry. He has shown a lot of promise in his first 3 years….if he stays healthy and QB play improves the numbers will only improve. Last time I checked 24th is pretty good but you have a right to have your opinion. I’m glad to have such a humble and talented person represent my school. There are way more worthy players in the NFL of the title “overrated”. Can you say Hewyard-Bey or Michael Crabtree? Calvin has already had a 1300 plus yard year…..many wide receivers go their whole career with out breaking a thousand in a season. Calvin is not a diva like other receivers either and his mental part of the game should be much easier given his humble nature…give him time…we all know hes got some talent.

Bad Apple Joe

July 7th, 2010
11:31 am

You must have never worn a jock strap or played a down of football in your life to say that Calvin Johnson is overrated. That is an idiotic comment as he has proven to be one of the best wideouts in the league AGAINST ALL ODDS in Detroit. That is- weak QB play, no consistency as to who is playing QB, weak defense, weak running game, weak line, weak everything. He has also played through countless injuries since Detroit had no other option but to force feed him the ball almost every play. Which makes it obvious to anyone who has ever sniffed the field that the defense is keying on him every play.

I would have loved to have seen the #’s Larry Fitzgerald and Randy Moss would have put up had they played in Detroit the last 3 years. And conversely how Calvin might have done if he played in Arizona or New England. When will people start realizing that what you do in the league is very much relative to who you have playing around you. Not to mention the coaching staff you have running the team…

Looks like Detroit has made some good strides in getting other pieces of the puzzle to fit in and around Calvin. Lets see if Detroit can make a step forward as a team and hold off on calling Calvin overrated until he gets something resembling a team around him… A QB would be a good start and the verdict is much more up in the air when it comes to Stafford.

Bad Apple Joe

July 7th, 2010
11:38 am

Researching Calvin’s stats won’t tell the whole story. While you’re at it, look into the QB stats and the QB ratings of all of the various QB’s he has played with thus far in Detroit. Then look into the defensive stats, time of possession comparisons, turnover margin, and injury reports for Calvin in his first three years. Throw in a coaching change and the overall ineptitude of the previous coaching staff while you’re at it… So many other factors to consider. All the stats you’ve mentioned thus far assume an “apples to apples” comparison with WR’s catching passes from Drew Brees, Tom Brady, Peyton Manning, etc, etc…

Again, you must have never worn a jock strap in your life.

wiley

July 7th, 2010
11:39 am

Thank you Bad Apple Joe. You said it better than I could.

Mz

July 7th, 2010
11:42 am

the guy went to tech….he should be used to losing by now

Tech Fan

July 7th, 2010
11:46 am

Calvin Johnson need to be playing for the Atlanta Falcons.

Bad Apple Joe

July 7th, 2010
11:47 am

Yep, just looked at the TE’s that Joe is referring to who had more receiving yards than Calvin last year… Their QB’s were Peyton Manning, Philip Rivers, and Tony Romo- needless to say all playing on MUCH BETTER teams. If you look at the other WR who finished ahead of Calvin you will see a similar theme- they have guys like Tom Brady, Drew Brees, Donovan McNabb, and Aaron Rodgers under center. And all of them play for better teams- considering it doesn’t get any worse than Detroit.

You can't hide stupid

July 7th, 2010
11:48 am

Mz, really funny. When was the last time GT had a losing season? You can’t hide stupid.

Time Out

July 7th, 2010
12:13 pm

But Calvin chose Gtech. He is used to losing.

Time Out

July 7th, 2010
12:16 pm

Not sure when GT had a losing season BUT I do know it has been 20 plus yrs since tech beat UGA without cheating (e.g. using ineligible players)

Jackets!

July 7th, 2010
12:17 pm

Right he really is losing out making millions of dollars a year. What a terrible decision CJ…you were only the second player overall taken in the 2007 draft. If you chose UGA you could have gotten arrested frequently and went drinking with your old pal D Evans. Instead you chose to attend a school with tradition, championships, and great academics. Did you guys realize that 2 out the last 3 years Georgia Tech has had the first receiver taken in the draft? Not too shabby.

Jackets!

July 7th, 2010
12:17 pm

Time Out

July 7th, 2010
12:18 pm

Calvin needs to focus his time engineering a new outdoor toilet, in my opinion.

Jackets!

July 7th, 2010
12:19 pm

Oh and 1996 was GTs last losing season. GT and UGA are tied on the list of longest active bowl streaks.

PTC DAWG

July 7th, 2010
12:42 pm

Good luck to CJ on helping to turn the Lions around. He and Stafford could, I say could, make a great pair.

john

July 7th, 2010
1:00 pm

The people dogging on Calvin must have never watched him play a down. He is a excellent WR, a hard worker and a good man. The UGA people saying he is overrated is like a Tech man saying AJ Green is overrated. Both of which would be wrong.

Raize R. Blaide

July 7th, 2010
1:05 pm

Good Luck Calvin – you’re a great receiver – Stafford has a chance to be a ‘franchise’ QB – But, you’ll continue to lose until the Lions get some linemen O&D…Matt Millen, the worst GM in the history of sports ruined the organization….The Ford’s reluctancy to realize this 5 or 6 yrs sooner added to this disaster. There seems to be a better mgt. staff in place now with a pretty good head coach so the future is not as dismal as the past. For your sake Calvin I hope so!!

Damon Evans

July 7th, 2010
1:19 pm

Good thing he didn’t go to UGA because he probably would have been arrested to like the rest of UGA’s thug team. Free shots on me!

Bad Apple Joe

July 7th, 2010
2:45 pm

I never took off a jock strap, Little Joe, until I was finished playing Division I college football. Its obvious from your posts that you’ve never worn one in your life and have likely not watched any Detroit Lions games over the last 3 years. That 1st overall draft pick you talk about has shown very little thus far but a propensity for throwing picks.. I still think Stafford will be good but he, like Calvin, has gotten pretty banged up thus far in Detroit. And yes- he, like Calvin, also plays for Detroit. I feel sorry for both of them but not too sorry considering the coin they are making…

I’d love to know how you are the resident expert on Detroit Lions football when they’re never on TV except for Thanksgiving. You should really watch them before commenting. Or better yet, don’t comment on football at all unless you’ve laced them up before at some level.

GT Bball Fan

July 7th, 2010
2:46 pm

Time Out = Dawgtard city

I hear UGA is running a promotion to be AD for a day. BWM and alcohol provided, bring you own Ho & red panties!

NCAA

July 7th, 2010
2:47 pm

Let’s go take a look at that unethical UGAy.

Bad Apple Joe

July 7th, 2010
2:53 pm

That first overall pick also had a QB rating of 61 last year, which ranks him as one of the league’s worst QB’s. I’m not ready to write Stafford off as a bust yet, because he was also playing for Detroit last year. But its not even close if you compare Calvin’s rookie year to Stafford’s… He is a victim of circumstance just like Stafford is playing in Detroit. Just like you are a victim of circumstance in trying to talk football with someone who has actually played at a high level.

Taylor Hanson

July 7th, 2010
3:03 pm

You’d think Calvin would be used to losing. Hasn’t been with a winner since High School.

Jackets!

July 7th, 2010
4:19 pm

Taylor Hanson…once again GT has not had a losing season since 1996….either has UGA. We are tied on the list of current active bowl streaks. Georgia Tech also is in the top 30 of all time wins for college football. Learn something young-in. 4 national titles, 13 SEC titles(UGA has 12 and we haven’t been in the SEC since the 1960s), Three ACC Tittles and numerous other accolades both individual and as a program. The only loser is you…dont feel bad for Calvin…Im pretty sure he is content with his decision to be a Yellow Jacket. I know some of this was a long time ago but 1980 was a loooong time ago too. Im glad I get to teach someone today…humanitarian act for the day…complete.

[...] says losing “is not easy on anyone” to the Ajc.com as he prepares to hold a youth football [...]

Not Disappointed

July 8th, 2010
1:41 pm

Hang in the Calvin. You’re still one of my favorites!

Johnkk

July 29th, 2010
3:04 pm

CRabwateva retarded name, is an absolute retard and doesn’t deserve to speak about football. Calvin is number 3 or 4 in the league behind only andre fitz and maybe wayne. The only reason his stats arent good is because he’s the only threat on that team and had a rookie quarterback throwing to him. Moss and welker bro are you serious thats not even compareable. First off they have one of the best quaterbacks in the league throwing to them and they also have each other so they both wont get doubleteamed. Hes faster jumops higher and stronger then moss so yet again your just stupid, and If calvin had brady his stats would be andre johnson like but with more touchdowns. “average to good nfl reciever” might be the biggest joke of a statement ive ever heard, you are a joke and don’t deserve to speak about football.