Detroit Lions wide receiver Calvin Johnson (81) celebrates by dunking the ball over the goal post after catching a pass for a touchdown during the fourth quarter against the Cincinnati Bengals at Ford Field. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

Calvin Johnson gets NFL Spin Zone Player of the Week


The Detroit Lions and fantasy owners got a Calvin Johnson without limitations back in Week 7, and he did everything he possibly could to put the Lions in a position to defeat the Cincinnati Bengals on Sunday. The Lions fell short as Mike Nugent nailed a game-winning 54-yard field goal, but Calvin Johnson certainly pulled his weight. He showed why he is easily the best receiver in the game, as he consistently found ways to bail Matthew Stafford out. His touchdown catch in triple coverage was just unreal, and those kind of playground passes only work when Johnson is on the receiving end. If you put any other WR in that position, then that throw would have been picked off by Reggie Nelson.

A.J. Green was magnificent (as usual) on the other side of the field, but Johnson was even better. He caught nine passes for 155 yards and two touchdowns, and he had another one of those monstrous performances that can save a fantasy owner’s game. Heck, it almost saved the Detroit Lions. They averaged just 3.1 yards per carry on the ground and no other receiver had nearly as good of a game as Johnson.

Johnson was easily the best player on the field on Sunday, and I think he was the best player this week. It’s rare that you see a wide receiver carry a team in a game, but that’s exactly what Megatron was able to do. He deserves every superlative in the book for not only his TD reception in triple coverage, but also his totally dominant performance. Johnson was simply too good as he consistently made big plays to boost Stafford’s numbers and made plays on just about every Bengals player who covered him.

There were some players who made enticing cases for this award (Robert Mathis and J.J. Watt were high on my list), but I decided to go with good ol’ Calvin Johnson. This was vintage Megatron, and you’ll be seeing that TD reception on highlight reels for years to come. His first touchdown reception was amazing to watch from a pure football perspective, because it was a situation where both Stafford and Johnson had to be perfect in order to make that play work for six; they certainly delivered.

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