“Getting this record hasn’t really sunk in yet, but at some point it will. People talk about it all the time, but we’re still in the season so the focus is on the next game. But after the season when everything calms down and I’m just chillin’ or layin’ back I’ll reflect on the season then and I’ll be like, ‘I put in a lot of work to get it.’
“Looking back on the game – my first thoughts are the ones I could have had and the fumble.
“As far as touching moments – that picture of my dad when I was at the press conference meant a lot. That was big, that was sweet. I don’t even think he’s seen it yet because I left it in my car when he was at the house – I didn’t think to get it out.
“Experiencing all of that with my dad was real cool – maybe surreal for my dad more so. He was down there on the sideline for probably like two or three series before it happened and he was out there like a little kid with just a smile on his face as it was leading up to the moment. Just being able to watch him be so happy – that meant a lot to me.
“In the stadium I know they showed those messages from Jerry and Herm. I didn’t get to see Jerry’s – I think it was going on while we were maybe in the huddle or something – maybe during the timeout – I just wasn’t really paying attention to it. But I saw it later. That meant a lot. That was cool to have Jerry send that out to me.
“Then from Herm – I talked to Herm earlier that week, so he was egging me on to go ahead and knock this thing out. I appreciate the support from both of them.
“I think getting to 2,000 would kind of put that record away for awhile. You never know what’s going to happen, but that’s real tough to reach. To get this far and make it to where we are right now, it’s crazy. I couldn’t imagine doing it again soon.”
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“Shopping for Christmas gifts, it’s hard to go out to the mall and get gifts because everybody wants to take a picture, so I just end up buying all my gifts online.
“Over the last few years I’ve been recognized more and more and more. It just keeps on more and more and once one person wants a picture, if you take it, then your shopping is finished because everybody else wants one.
“I don’t even try to disguise myself now, I just don’t go to the mall. And if I do go, I just go right when they open.
“My parents’ anniversary is on Christmas Eve, so my brother and sisters always used to cook for them, make cookies for Santa afterwards and watch ‘The Grinch’ and then try to go to sleep. I don’t remember what we made, but it was always a nice little dinner.
“My favorite Christmas gift ever has to be my Ninja Turtles when I was little. I got the four.
“Picking my favorite turtle – that’s a tough one because I love the nunchucks but Donatello was my favorite with the stick. I like him because of his weapon.
“I got the bus. I got the mini-van, whatever it was. I was good after that.”
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Johnson: “In a tough season that we’re going through, it’s cool to read (fan comments) to give me a little lift.”Posted by on December 12, 2012 – 4:19 pm
“It was cool to see all of those comments from fans last week. In a tough season that we’re going through, it’s kind of cool to read some of that stuff to give me a little lift.
“After all the expectations on the team this year – not only what fans had, but we had of ourselves – it is disheartening to be where we are right now because it should be everybody’s ultimate goal to win the Super Bowl.
“Even if you don’t watch a lot of football, everybody watches the Super Bowl. To be able to just be in a position to where you have a chance to be a part of that and get one of those, to come up so far short so many years, it gets tough. It’s frustrating especially after last year what we went through and then to fall back this year.
“We’re looking ahead to this week. Arizona has a good defense. Starting with the front, Darnell Dockett and Campbell up there. They have some players that cause some havoc up there. They play a little 3-4 so they have some standup guys in the linebackers. Paris Lenon’s over there. It’s kind of good to see guys that you came in here that we were here still in the league. He’s one of those older guys that’s still playing at 35.
“They’ve got some talent on the back end especially with their guy Pat Peterson. Peterson, he’s a talent out there. Whether it be returning the ball or on defense, you just don’t want the ball in the guy’s hands. We have to be able to take advantage of those matchups that we’re going to get with him when he goes one-on-one with me and he’s probably going to follow me.
“Those are the things that we’re going to have to take advantage of, but they have some talent over there. Even though they got beat like they did last week, we can’t come out gun shy. We have to be able to go at those guys because they’re definitely going to want to get that bad taste from last week out of their mouths.”
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“Seeing comments here from the fans – having that support means a ton. I remember when I first started playing in this league, my coach Shawn J, he would tell me, ‘you should play every game like it’s your last because you never know who’s watching or what may happen.’
“One thing that touched me – he said, ‘you never know when a father might bring his son to a game that they could barely afford and it would be the only game they could come to.’ And I thought about when I was a kid. I could never go to a game. I always wanted to.
“You want to be that guy that stands out for that little kid so he has something to remember, something to hold on to. Those are some of the things that are actually motivation that I look forward to Sundays for.
“The more and more I’m here, the more and more I’m around town, I meet people. I’m doing things around Detroit and get to mingle with the fans and through my foundation we do a lot of stuff too. Those things are all great to have to get to know people. Much thanks to the fans for the support.”
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“Last week was definitely one of those physically, mentally taxing games. You think you have the game there three minutes to go, you’re up double digits and they come back and win. It’s mind blowing. It’s frustrating.
“There’s plays before that last drive where we ran the ball three times that we could have made to ice the game. There were interceptions we could have had that could have iced the game. There’s so many things that could have been done. We just have to find a way to make one of those things happen and we’ll get the result that we want. It’s just a matter of somebody taking the initiative to make the play.
“Getting through the rest of the season by a sense of pride, eye in the sky really. Everything you’re doing you’re putting on film and everybody’s going to see it.
“The whole thing about the record is tough. You can’t help but to think about it when everybody around you is talking about it. That’s the main thing. It’s something that’s reachable, tangible. Do I want it? Yeah, that would be fantastic. I’m going to play my butt off for it, just try to take advantage of the opportunities given.
“The fact that it wouldn’t be in a winning season is tough, but the big thing … it’s not changing the way people are playing me or anything like that. So it will still be very significant if it does happen.
“Getting the franchise record along the way would be big. Herman Moore was the big receiver back in the day. It was a really big thing for teams to have big receivers. To take over a franchise record, that means a lot. Any kind of record you get in this league, it means a lot. They’re hard to come by.
“Looking ahead to Sunday, winning at Lambeau would be huge. Mainly for the reason I haven’t won there in my career. Especially when you love to play there, place with history and stuff behind it like that. That makes it that much more special.”
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“Our last game was physically and emotionally draining in all kinds of ways. We were out there through the whole quarter of overtime, that’s the physical aspect of it, and then the ups and downs during the game. Then it being Thanksgiving – it was taxing.
“This season has been tough, but we put ourselves in the situation. So the only thing we can do is keep working and finish the season strong. We need to bring those things together that we’ve been struggling on, whether it be missed assignments or whatever else it might be that’s holding us back. Eliminate those things during these last five games and get ourselves going in the right direction.
“That would be huge breaking Jerry Rice’s record. That’s a landmark. That’s crazy. You never know when you’re going to be in this position again so you have to best take advantage of it.
“Breaking it is possible, definitely possible. You just have to get over that 100 mark every game, which is not hard. I’m definitely thinking about it, but I just have to keep on working, keep it in the back of my mind, but still focus on the task at hand.
“When I first really got into football, Steve Young, Jerry – they were the duo that everybody wanted to be like. Everybody wanted to have that kind of chemistry as far as a wide receiver and a quarterback goes. That kind of chemistry on the field, that’s what everybody wants. That’s what everybody strives for to put up those kind of numbers.”
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“Sunday’s loss hurt. Mainly because it puts us in an even deeper hole as far as looking forward to a postseason. With it being a divisional game, especially against a team that we had right where we wanted them late in fourth quarter, it hurt. A touchdown wins the game but we came out with a field goal.
“Personally, I don’t know what the playoff picture is. I just keep on playing. That’s how I’ve been ever since I’ve been here. We’re 0-16, keep on grinding. That’s all I know to do, is grind.
“It’s just part of you. It just is you or it’s not. You’ll see it on film. You can’t go out there and just lay an egg on film because everybody sees it. You don’t want to put yourself out there as the guy who’s going to lay it down when things aren’t going right. You have to be there. I want to be consistent, put it like that.
“Competition each week is worth it all by itself – no doubt about it. Whether you play those guys again next year or whatever it may be, it’s on film. They’re going to remember that. There’s something to it.
“Titus not being here – he’s been a distraction the last few weeks whether it being him just not being fully prepared or not showing up to things when we have things on the schedule – him not being there on time. It’s just him not being a professional, put it like that. Pointblank, simple.
“I’m looking forward to Broyles getting a larger role. It’s been fun seeing him progress throughout the season coming off his ACL. Being a rookie and having been through that, seeing him come through the growing pains, he’s coming on up so it’s good to see that.
“Mike (Thomas) has some experience so it will be good on Thursday to get him out there, somebody with some wheels as well as (Brian) Robiskie. Giving him a chance to earn a spot and get some plays. It’s going to be fun to play with these guys and be out there leading them along.
“From the Texans, we expect a lot of cover one. It’s going to be put upon us on the outside to make some plays. Not all the time that what we see on film is what we get on Sunday. We see cover one on one day and we get to the game it will be cover two, cover six. It just all depends. But if we do get our one-on-one matchups, then we’re expected to win those and the game’s going to be on our shoulders.”
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Johnson: “I can’t exactly sense what the fans feel … I can definitely understand they would expect more”Posted by on November 14, 2012 – 4:49 pm
“I can’t exactly sense what the fans feel. From being around them, they’re always great. I can definitely understand they would expect more – they would have expected more out of us at this point of the season. We think the same thing. We expect more out of ourselves, too.
“We’ve just got to learn how to finish games off. We need to eliminate penalties, and other things here and there that eventually come together to leading us to losing a game like we did last week. We need to nip those things in the bud before we get to the next game.
“As a captain, I’ve definitely been talking to guys a little bit more – more than usual, actually. Because I haven’t been able to practice, I’m around the whole practice field just catching vibes from everybody throughout the week. It’s been good to be able to just communicate with those guys and see where their minds are at. I learn something from them or they learn something from me. Just keeping the lines of communication open is the big thing.
“In my room, that’s maybe where I’m most vocal – especially with my guys as far as trying to get their minds right. Shawn can do so much, but coming from somebody that they’re playing with day-by-day, it means a lot to them and they told me this, too.
“The more and more I can talk to those guys, they lean on me when they don’t know something and I give them some of my experience so they don’t make the mistakes that I made probably in the past. They’ve been real responsive.”
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“I’m feeling alright, not as bad as last week – not quite as bad. Still some things I have to work on to get better in treatment but it’s definitely not as bad as last week.
“The only experience I’ve had physically that was similar to last week’s game is my rookie year when I had some pretty good back pain. That was tough. You lose some of your focus because you’re thinking about the pain – whenever you make a move it’s hurting.
“The fact that I had a big game is based off the coverage – it always is. We got very favorable coverage, some Cover 1, Cover 3, some Cover 2, but we were able to exploit it more when they were playing single high. At the same time, the running game was working like crazy. They were running the heck out of the ball, Mikel and Joique. Those things contributed to it.
“Going into half time I’m sitting there like, ‘dang I can get 200 yards this game’, but at the same time I’m thinking that our running game is really killing them right now, so I figured we would run the ball to kill the clock. They did a great job of protecting the ball and gaining yards – big chunks, too.
“We got our run game going and that’s a big help. I think it’s an attitude – an edge – that’s really what’s been getting the run game going. The kind of whoop-ass attitude they’ve been coming with.
“They were kicking the opponents’ behinds last few weeks. So if they keep that same attitude, we will hopefully have a lot of the same this week.
“The fact that we won at Minnesota last year definitely gives you a little added confidence going into their place. The way we won and the way we hung in there plus the way we’re playing right now.
“They have a very good defensive front and stopping them will be key. We will have to get in and out of our routes fast, which creates openings for Matt to get us the ball before anything happens with that defensive line.”
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“The key last week for the offense was converting third downs. We were 12 for 16. We did a pretty dang good job on third down. One thing I did notice in the huddle, guys were definitely focused and guys took it upon themselves to make a play when we got in that situation.
“Having Titus, Scheff and Pettigrew step up is huge – especially Pettigrew because he’s moving in between the hashes doing a lot of work in there. A lot of times when we catch zones or something like that, there’s a lot of openings in there. He was able to do that.
“TY was able to exploit them on the outside deep down the field. That was huge for us. That was one thing that was preached all week that we can’t stop running outside because they might let a route go and that’s exactly what they did. He got behind them for a touchdown. Scheffler, same thing. He’s dynamic as far as tight end/receiver.
“If they keep that up that means I get more balls – no doubt. We saw some single-high in the last few games, too. I’ll see the ball more and more if they want to keep doctoring them up, doctoring up coverages. Matt’s getting more comfortable with hitting TY and some of the other receivers.
“If the defense is coming with me, if I’m getting more than one person, I don’t have a problem with somebody else getting the ball because they’re one-on-one. You take advantage of your one-on-one matchups. When I get one-on-one, yeah I want the ball.
“Getting back to .500 would be huge for us. We’re not exactly where we wanted. Winning would put us in good position to finish out this season. We started off 2-4 at one point and now to be able to win two straight games, win 3 out of 4 of our second quarter games. That has us going in the right direction with a little more confidence.
“We can get a little win streak going and hopefully we take that to the second half of the season.”
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