Denver receiver Demaryius Thomas has a busy week ahead of him getting ready to play in Super Bowl 50, but he took a moment during Monday's media event to chat about his close friend, Calvin Johnson.
Johnson is contemplating retirement after nine NFL seasons. Thomas admitted that the news caught him a bit off guard.
"I'm very surprised," Thomas said. "He still can play. He's still one of the top guys in the league. I was surprised, but that's his decision. I'm here supporting him because I've been around him a long time."
Thomas, like Johnson, played his college ball at Georgia Tech, and the two work out together in the offseason in Atlanta.
"Hands down every year he produced," Thomas said. "He was amazing. I watched him. He was the reason I went to Georgia Tech. We trained together in the offseason back in Atlanta.
"Basically training every day. We always competed. It was me, Calvin, we had (Bengals WR) A.J. (Green) around. It was always about competing most of the time."
Thomas acknowledged that big receivers like himself, Johnson and Green take a beating through the course of the season. He admitted it can catch up with players at some point.
"At a certain point, you get banged up a lot," he said. "You get tired of it and then knowing what they have to do in the offseason. It's a quick turnaround. It's quicker than what people usually think.
"I get hit in the legs a lot, so it does bother you as the season goes and you still feel some of it after the season. So, that could bother people as well because if you don't really take care of yourself you could end up not being able to walk once you get older."
It's believed Johnson is contemplating retirement because of the beating his body has taken over nine NFL seasons. He's had knee, ankle and finger issues over the last few seasons that have limited the amount of time he's been able to practice in order to play on Sundays.
Whatever Johnson ultimately decides, Thomas says Megatron should go down as one of the all-time best and eventually find a spot in Canton, Ohio at the Hall of Fame.
"I think so," Thomas said when asked if Johnson was a Hall-of-Fame player. "He's got records. Every year he's produced big plays. He's one of the best that plays."