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 Calvin Johnson 
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Post Calvin Johnson
I was talking with some guys at work and we had an interesting conversation about Calvin. So what im about to post isnt what I think should happen or anything, its just a discussion, thats all.

It seems every year since hes been drafted theyve hyped him up (so have I), about how hes so big and fast and how no one can cover him. But so far, its all been talk for the most part. Every offseason everyone on the team talks so highly of him and how hes gonna be huge this year, but it never really ends up happening. I know its early this year, but theres several receivers that have nowhere near his measurables or talent, that are getting bigger numbers.

Look at the end of the Bears game when he CAUGHT it in the end zone. You would think that they would say to themselves, "He can do that?" And realize what throwing him the ball can do?

Questions I always ask myself is like how come Miles Austin can get so open every time? Why cant Calvin have that?
How come our QB doesnt throw it to him 100 times a game?? Seems like his height and jumping he should catch 99 of those over the defenders heads? (Obviously an exageration, but u get the point).

Shouldnt 6'5" 239# with 4.35 speed and great hands = Unstoppable?

You gotta think somewhere deeeeep down, CJ is watching guys like Miles Austin, Moss, Andre, DeSean..etc... wishing he could get those oppurtunities. And deeeeeep down, you gotta think hes at one point thought of asking for a trade. MAYBE IM WRONG.

Is CJ really making THAT big of an impact with this team right now? Im really just curious, because I only get to watch every other game, and even those games u cant see what a receiver is doing down field due to the camera angles, unless you were at the game.

Like I said, i know its early, but even with all our "weapons", it still doesnt seem like its making that big of an impact on CJ. Burleson hasnt done much so far. Hopefully Jahvid's game against Philly will help out, and im sure it will.

Is it that our O-line is not giving him enough time to get downfield?

Like i said earlier, im not saying any of the following should happen, im just making a simple discussion. Because im sure there are a ton of Lions fans wondering the same.

But in the event that Calvin was traded (i hate that word), what value would he have at this point? And what effect would it have on this team?


I love CJ and would hope he will always be a Lion, and i definetly dont think they should trade him or anything like that, because I really do think he can be the best WR in the game. Something just has to click one day, right?

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September 21st, 2010, 2:59 pm
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Post Re: Calvin Johnson
You dont trade one of your best guys unless you are just downright taking the other team to the cleaners...it's that simple.

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September 21st, 2010, 3:04 pm
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Post Re: Calvin Johnson
I've said this dozens of times so far, but I'll say it again.

CJ IS GETTING OPEN. He's getting open, but it takes more than 5 yards. Just go back and watch the game film from last week and even week 1 when he was matched up against a weaker corner than Asante Samuel who is one of the best CBs in the game (last week was Bowman, who's average).

CJ's getting open, but the line isn't giving Stafford OR Hill enough time to throw the ball more than 10 yards down the field...and when they do, Hill's arm is terrible. Either there's a WR a step behind CJ and Hill underthrows it, floats it, or throws it away...or he throws to someone else who's double covered.

CJ has dropped a couple balls so far. So what, he's not Andre "the magnet" Johnson. Everyone drops balls. Moss drops balls. Marshall drops quite a few balls. Wayne drops balls. It happens. But to say that he only caught 4 balls out of 11 targets (yes, those were the stats last week) was his fault is entirely not true. He may have been responsible for maybe 2 of those non-catches. The rest were Hill's fault.

Did CJ run the wrong route on a slant last game and the ball almost get picked? Maybe, I don't know who's fault it was. It's easy to blame the WR who's been in the system for 2 years, but it's even easier to blame the new, backup QB who has had few snaps behind center and has no chemistry with these guys.

My point - don't hate on CJ because the lack of him getting the ball is a combination of 3 things:
1) The line is piss poor and our passing game could rival New England's, Houston's, or any other top passing team.
2) Our QB (yes, our backup), is not good. His arm is weak and he throws like Jeff Moonball Garcia. Hill will birddog receivers or simply checkdown when his first read isn't there. That's partly due to the poor line play.
3) The playcalling is absolutely terrible. When they want to get CJ involved, they do and he produces.

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September 21st, 2010, 3:11 pm
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Post Re: Calvin Johnson
I don't really like CJ all that much. I didn't want us to draft him, but warmed up to getting what I did think was the best player in the draft. I preferred to fill a position of need, but I did think he was a stud WR and he was going to be a stud WR throughout his NFL career.

That said, IMO you're completely wrong about CJ. I don't think he wants a trade, I don't think he cares about getting Moss type stats, and I think he's perfectly comfortable with being a mediocre WR in a great WR's body. Why do I think this? Because he more or less said so. He was asked if we're ever going to see that great fire out of him, or if we're ever going to see him play nasty with a chip on his shoulder (a la Moss, Steve Smith, etc). His reply was more or less "naa, not really... what you see is what you get with me." Also, rewind to his contract negotiation where his Mom was pushing the buttons, telling him to treat it like a business, and telling him to get every last dollar you can, even if it means holding out. Fast forward a bit to his back injury when his Mom came out and told him that it's just a game, and that he needs to better protect himself. Add to that what we've seen out of him in the last few seasons and you get what we have: a mediocre WR in a great WR's body.

I liked the idea of trading him last year for multiple draft picks, but people said I was crazy. I didn't like the idea of having him, Stafford, and Suh all on the team and all commanding more than $50 million dollar contracts. I DID like the idea of getting much cheaper, younger talent that we could spread around this team, and allow us to add some quality free agents. I'm still in support of that, and I think that we should dump CJ for either 1) multiple draft picks, or 2) a very good WR and a draft pick or two.

I was told last year that we can't trade a "great player," and last year I would have agreed that he either was great or he was going to be great, this year I can't say that I agree. I'd like us to dump him before he's commanding Larry Fitzgerhald money and putting up Mark Clayton/Braylon Edwards stats.


September 21st, 2010, 3:11 pm
Post Re: Calvin Johnson
regularjoe12 wrote:
You dont trade one of your best guys unless you are just downright taking the other team to the cleaners...it's that simple.


You trade anyone that will better the team.


September 21st, 2010, 3:12 pm
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Post Re: Calvin Johnson
I don't know. If you have a frontline player, face of the franchise, it's pretty damn hard to trade them. For example, if you're the Royals, do you trade Grienke for a load of prospects and hope they don't turn out like Maybin and Miller did in the Cabrera trade. That's a risk you take. It could turn out good, or it could be a total wash. Do the Lions expect to be competitive in the next 2 years? Trading Their best offensive player would set them back a ton. Can they replace CJ in the next 2 years while filling multiple holes?

The Lions should be open to entertaining offers for CJ, but it'd take one hell of a package to do so. If they could get a McNeil and a Jackson AND more, it should be considered. However, both of those guys want serious coin, and both want more than what CJ's making. Unfortunately, in the NFL, you have to work around the cap (they will anyway).

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September 21st, 2010, 3:14 pm
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Post Re: Calvin Johnson
wjb21ndtown wrote:
regularjoe12 wrote:
You dont trade one of your best guys unless you are just downright taking the other team to the cleaners...it's that simple.


You trade anyone that will better the team.



how does trading him make the team better? Remeber last year when he was the ONLY recieveer we had? Burleson is pretty decent but he isnt enough to pick up the slack of losing CJ. We'd be an awful mess on offense without him occupying 2-3 defenders every play.

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September 21st, 2010, 3:24 pm
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Post Re: Calvin Johnson
conversion02 wrote:
I don't know. If you have a frontline player, face of the franchise, it's pretty damn hard to trade them. For example, if you're the Royals, do you trade Grienke for a load of prospects and hope they don't turn out like Maybin and Miller did in the Cabrera trade. That's a risk you take. It could turn out good, or it could be a total wash. Do the Lions expect to be competitive in the next 2 years? Trading Their best offensive player would set them back a ton. Can they replace CJ in the next 2 years while filling multiple holes?

The Lions should be open to entertaining offers for CJ, but it'd take one hell of a package to do so. If they could get a McNeil and a Jackson AND more, it should be considered. However, both of those guys want serious coin, and both want more than what CJ's making. Unfortunately, in the NFL, you have to work around the cap (they will anyway).


If we can trade Backus and CJ for McNiel and Jackson I think it makes us a better football team. It would be nice to get a draft pick or two from SD, but player swap alone I think it makes us better.


September 21st, 2010, 3:40 pm
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Post Re: Calvin Johnson
regularjoe12 wrote:
how does trading him make the team better?


You're obviously not trained in Marinelli Math.

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September 21st, 2010, 3:42 pm
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Post Re: Calvin Johnson
regularjoe12 wrote:
wjb21ndtown wrote:
regularjoe12 wrote:
You dont trade one of your best guys unless you are just downright taking the other team to the cleaners...it's that simple.


You trade anyone that will better the team.



how does trading him make the team better? Remeber last year when he was the ONLY recieveer we had? Burleson is pretty decent but he isnt enough to pick up the slack of losing CJ. We'd be an awful mess on offense without him occupying 2-3 defenders every play.



Ha... occupying 2-3 defenders every play? C' mon. He does draw a double team occasionally, and safeties HAVE to keep an eye on him, but he doesn't consistently occupy 2-3 defenders. The bottom line is that this offense doesn't look much different without CJ. He may take a little pressure off of Burleson, but he's not doing much to open up anything for Best or anyone else... Why? Because he's not getting down field, and he's not going over the middle.

On top of that... he's GOING to demand Larry Fitz type of money and this team is better letting him leave for that kind of coin.


September 21st, 2010, 3:45 pm
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Post Re: Calvin Johnson
You obviously haven't been watching the games - he's drawing a safety on almost EVERY play. Hell, even the LB has slide his way

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September 21st, 2010, 3:50 pm
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Post Re: Calvin Johnson
conversion02 wrote:
You obviously haven't been watching the games - he's drawing a safety on almost EVERY play. Hell, even the LB has slide his way



THANK YOU! my thoughts exactly!

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September 21st, 2010, 4:06 pm
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Post Re: Calvin Johnson
Freep wrote:
Posted: Sept. 21, 2010
Why isn't Calvin Johnson making more catches for Lions?
BY DAVE BIRKETT
FREE PRESS SPORTS WRITER

By almost anyone's definition, Calvin Johnson is among the best wide receivers in the NFL. He's big, fast and physical. A matchup problem for cornerbacks and a nightmare for defensive coordinators.

So why have the Lions treated Johnson more like a sidekick through two games?

Johnson ranks 49th with 95 receiving yards, fewer than Legedu Naanee and Aaron Hernandez have had in single games. Johnson has one first-half catch this season.

Coach Jim Schwartz said Monday that Johnson remains an integral part of the offense, and in fairness, the Lions have leaned on him when they needed big plays late in games.

But while Jahvid Best, Brandon Pettigrew and Tony Scheffler have thrived at times, defenses have shut down the team's deadliest offensive weapon -- and the Lions haven't been able to win.

"He's obviously a big part of our offense and one of our best players, so you want to have the ball in those guys' hands," Schwartz said. "But there's some times you just can't force it, and if you do, then you're making bad decisions."

Missing megatron
Johnson has just eight catches through two games, a number so low that even some of his teammates can’t believe it.

“It’s kind of crazy, isn’t it?” receiver Nate Burleson said. “I thought about that, too, but with Best playing so well and getting his numbers up, you can’t really (complain).”

While Best and tight ends Scheffler and Pettigrew have spearheaded the Lions’ passing attack so far — 29 combined catches — Johnson and the rest of the Lions’ high-priced receivers have been quiet.

Burleson, the Lions’ biggest free-agent addition on offense, has just two catches for 23 yards, though he missed most of Sunday’s loss to the Eagles with a high ankle sprain.

No. 3 receiver Bryant Johnson has two catches for 28 yards, No. 4 receiver Derrick Williams hasn’t played yet, and Johnson (95 yards) is coming off his second straight four-catch game.

“I think we targeted him 10 or 11 times in this game; that’s a good number,” Schwartz said. “I mean, Calvin’s a good player and scores touchdowns and does all those things, but anytime you’re going into a game with an artificial number saying, ‘Hey, we have to get him the ball, we have to do this, we have to do that,’ to me, you’re taking away from what you want to do as an offense, as a football team.”

Schwartz wasn’t too concerned when pressed about Johnson’s lack of production Monday, pointing out that the Lions got 376 rushing and receiving yards from their running backs and tight ends against the Eagles.

Best had 232 of those yards and three of the Lions’ four touchdowns. Johnson scored the other with 1:50 to play.

“Our object is to score points, not to favor a particular position, a particular player, anything else,” Schwartz said. “We need to be smart about how we do things, and he’s one of our better playmakers. We need to get the ball in his hands, but you also have to be judicious. You can’t make bad decisions.”

A number of factors have contributed to Johnson’s slow start.

• Injuries to Burleson and quarterback Matthew Stafford. Burleson turned his ankle on the first play Sunday, and Stafford has played just two quarters this season because of a sprained throwing shoulder. With backup Shaun Hill behind center, the Lions don’t have the same ability to stretch the field.

• The Lions have jumped to early leads in both games by sticking to a game plan that didn’t revolve around Johnson, so they haven’t felt the need to force anything to their top playmaker. Johnson has just one first-half catch and didn’t catch his second pass against the Eagles until the first play of the fourth quarter. When the Lions need a score late in a game, Johnson still is the primary option.

• Defenses have done a good job scheming to stop Johnson. Chicago played lots of two-deep zone coverage, with a safety shadowing over top and a cornerback playing underneath Johnson, and Burleson said Philadelphia slid plenty of help Johnson’s way, too.

“Teams are not going to let Calvin get single coverage,” Burleson said. “We watched the Eagles film, and they do kind of a triangle bracket on the outside and inside guys. We saw that all week, and we were hoping we weren’t going to get it, but we knew we were going to get it.”

Johnson faced similar defenses last year, when he saw his receptions, yards, touchdowns and per-catch average tumble after a breakout 2008.

And while other star receivers put up Pro Bowl numbers despite added defensive attention, Burleson said he hasn’t detected any frustration from Johnson about his role.

“Eventually, we’re going to face a team that’s cocky enough to give us (a) single safety, and I guarantee we’ll expose him, just like we did in the preseason,” Burleson said. “Until then, we got to wait, got to be patient. We played two teams, Chicago and the Eagles, they’re not going to let you go over the top. That’s their game plan.”

Contact DAVE BIRKETT: 313-222-8831 or dbirkett@freepress.com. Read more in his Lions blog at freep.com/lionsblog.

http://www.freep.com/apps/pbcs.dll/arti ... ullarticle

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September 21st, 2010, 4:14 pm
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Post Re: Calvin Johnson
4 years with CJ. 8 wins so far. The games do not change with him in the lineup as they seem like they should. This may get better with Stafford in the game, but to date it is not there. I hope this becomes the case.

The first 3 seasons for CJ are essentially identical production wise to the first 3 seasons for Roy Williams. Plus 250 yards or so, less 3 or 4 touchdowns. CJ is better, but is does not show up in the win column.

This is the fallacy of drafting a WR so high and paying so much. Stafford and Suh will command the bulk of the dollars going forward, can you afford to keep CJ past his 1st contract?

CJ is not the face of the franchise, Stafford is and will be going forward.

The Lions are a LT and 2 DBs aways from being really set to compete for the playoffs, they probably won't get them all in the next draft. That means 2012 I guess? Will CJ be looking for $80 million at that point?

For the right offer, I would not be shocked to see him traded. Not for a song, but for a significant package of picks or players. The money involved may make this the best play in the next couple of seasons.

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September 21st, 2010, 4:32 pm
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Post Re: Calvin Johnson
jrd66 wrote:
4 years with CJ. 8 wins so far. The games do not change with him in the lineup as they seem like they should. This may get better with Stafford in the game, but to date it is not there. I hope this becomes the case.

The first 3 seasons for CJ are essentially identical production wise to the first 3 seasons for Roy Williams. Plus 250 yards or so, less 3 or 4 touchdowns. CJ is better, but is does not show up in the win column.

This is the fallacy of drafting a WR so high and paying so much. Stafford and Suh will command the bulk of the dollars going forward, can you afford to keep CJ past his 1st contract?

CJ is not the face of the franchise, Stafford is and will be going forward.

The Lions are a LT and 2 DBs aways from being really set to compete for the playoffs, they probably won't get them all in the next draft. That means 2012 I guess? Will CJ be looking for $80 million at that point?

For the right offer, I would not be shocked to see him traded. Not for a song, but for a significant package of picks or players. The money involved may make this the best play in the next couple of seasons.



Yeah...gotta admit..the philosophy of "we can lose just as well without him" is so Millen it's not even funny...If I never hear that again it will be too soon. Dont blaim the line, or the rotten D...it's all CJ's fault the bastard!

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September 21st, 2010, 4:54 pm
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