LIONS INSIDER

Drops on Monday night still bothering Calvin Johnson

Posted Dec 19, 2013

Calvin Johnson had two critical drops in Monday night's loss to Baltimore than could have altered the outcome of that game

Calvin Johnson does things on the football field that defies both logic and physics at times. He’s the best receiver in the game. Some would argue the best player in football.

Calvin JohnsonWR Calvin Johnson (Photo: Gavin Smith)

It's no surprise, then, how some were a bit taken back by the two drive-killing drops recorded by Johnson in Monday night’s loss to Baltimore. Even Johnson seemed to be searching for answers as he sat on the bench after each one just shaking his head.

He's credited with eight drops on the season by STATS, LLC on 153 targets. That's a drop percentage of 5.3, which is still pretty low.

He still seemed bothered by the two he let get away on Monday Night Football when he spoke to the media on Thursday, however.

"You just want to get back and see it on film just so you can see exactly what you did," he said. "It’s like I said, you just have to stay on it a little bit longer.

"Turned the head too soon and can’t see it all the way in. Simple as that.”

No one on this Detroit Lions team works harder than Johnson. No one hates making mistakes more than him, either. He’s first through individual drills at practice and first working the jug machine after practice.

His availability for practice, though, has been an issue at times this season. Johnson has been dealing with a sore knee for most of the year and coaches have had to limit his practice time to keep him available for games.

"It’s never ideal that you’re not out there at practice, but Calvin does a good of staying up on a lot of things,” head coach Jim Schwartz said. "You’ll see him take jugs work afterwards. He works really hard in the weight room and things that he can do.

"We have some treadmills that take the pressure off of you when you run and underwater stuff. He works really hard, but there is no substitute for practice. That’s the reason that we go out there every day.”

Johnson is still have an All Pro caliber season with 81 receptions for 1,449 yards and 12 touchdowns, but for a player who's always striving for perfection, not being perfect on Monday night was frustrating.

"Calvin’s made a lot of big plays for us," Schwartz said. "He’ll bounce back from it."