Last season, a lot of fans had their eyes on two NFL records: Eric Dickerson's 1984 record for most rushing yards in a season (2,105) and Jerry Rice's 1995 record for most receiving yards (1,848) in a season. Adrian Peterson came less than 10 yards away from breaking Dickerson's record, but he said he's not only aiming to break it next season; he's shooting for 2,500 yards.
Calvin Johnson succeeded in breaking Rice's record (1,964) while playing with broken fingers. But he isn't all that thrilled at the prospect of breaking it again (the record that is). Megatron did say his "Personal goal is to do better than I did last year in every category."
So what's the problem? Is he remorseful about all the cornerbacks he embarrased last season? Well, no. Johnson's record-breaking performance wasn't just because of his skill; it resulted from necessity.
- The Lions' receiver core was plagued by injuries last season. Johnson had to be that dude in order for Detroit to stand a fighting chance.
- The Detroit Lions wouldn't be the Detroit Lions without struggle. They were losing a lot late in games, which means a lot more passing and more yards for Calvin Johnson. The Lions led the league in pass attempts last season.
- As a result of the above factors, Johnson had more than double the amount of receptions and almost quadruple the amount of yards as Brandon Pettigrew, who ranked second on the team in receptions.
So it's easy to see where Johnson is coming from. Would he be able to pull similar numbers with a better supporting cast? Johnson also remarked, "It’s definitely possible, but if guys are healthy, I shouldn’t have to do that." Another example of why he's one of the league's classiest acts.
[via Pro Football Talk]