TODAY'S PAPER
55° Good Evening
55° Good Evening
SportsFootballGiants

Lions' Calvin Johnson too much for Giants' secondary

Detroit Lions wide receiver Calvin Johnson runs for

Detroit Lions wide receiver Calvin Johnson runs for a 67-yard touchdown reception during the first quarter of a game against the Giants in Detroit, Monday, Sept. 8, 2014. Credit: AP / Carlos Osorio

DETROIT - The Giants' secondary was supposed to be vastly improved. Instead, they had MegaTroubles.

Calvin Johnson caught two touchdown passes in the first 10 minutes, had more than 100 receiving yards by the end of the first half and spent most of Monday night's game against the Giants looking just like what Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie had called him: the best receiver in the league.

Johnson was the guy the Giants said they had to stop, which made his exploits in their 35-14 loss at Ford Field all the more frustrating.

"It's definitely hard to take anything positive out of that, the way we went out and played," Rodgers-Cromartie said. "That is definitely not how you want to open up."

Johnson finished with seven catches for 164 yards. His first touchdown came on a brutal play in which safety Stevie Brown collided with Rodgers-Cromartie near the sideline, freeing Johnson to catch the ball down the middle of the field and high-step the final 20 yards of a 67-yard play.

"That hurt a lot," Rodgers-Cromartie said. "Especially how it happened, guys colliding. At the end of the day, you have to try to bounce back from that. It definitely put a fork in the defense."

Johnson's second touchdown came on a 16-yard reception in which linebacker Jacquian Williams was covering him. Matthew Stafford threw to his right while rolling left for a perfect back-shoulder pass to a diving Johnson.

Johnson, who absorbed the tough talk from the Giants' defensive backs last week, was MegaMagnanimous after the game. "They had two good corners out there," he said. "They had a good secondary overall."

The Giants stuck Rodgers-Cromartie on Johnson for most of the game. The defense did a good job of making the Lions one-dimensional by stopping the run and limiting them to 76 yards on the ground. Unfortunately for the Giants, that one dimension was Johnson.

Said cornerback Prince Amukamara: "You just can't leave guys open. I don't know what happened. I don't know what happened tonight."

Lions wide receiver Golden Tate was happy to fill him in. He said with a chuckle, "I think they might have forgotten that C.J. is Megatron and left him open a few times."

New York Sports