- George Zimmerman will not be charged in domestic dispute
- Russian officials press bilateral U.S. trade deal
- Selfies at Funerals blog creator retires after Obama flub: ‘Our work here is done’
- New Obama adviser Podesta is against Keystone but will steer clear of pipeline deliberations
- 40 Australian adults, children found in ‘one of the worst accounts of incest ever made public’
- Venezuela’s Maduro calls on student ‘price vigilantes’ to hit the streets, report businesses
- Atheists smug as Hindus join Satanists to demand display at Oklahoma Statehouse
- Bow before Valkyrie, NASA’s ‘superhero robot’ entry in DARPA challenge
- 10-year-old Pennsylvania boy suspended for pretend bow-and-arrow shooting
- Tea partiers turn on Capitol Hill budget deal
Calvin Johnson will command attention of Redskins’ beleaguered defense
One of the elite wide receivers in the sport sees a Washington Redskins secondary that starts two rookies, has struggled to tackle and limit yards after catches and been torched by two of the league’s better offenses through the first two weeks of the season.
The Lions haven’t won a game in Washington — ever. But Johnson sees an opportunity against a defense that is in the midst of soul-searching this week after allowing 1,023 yards of total offense in two losses.
“There’s been a lot of yardage after the catch, guys breaking tackles,” Johnson said. “We see the same thing that they see [on film]. Obviously, it’s a copycat league and teams try to exploit the same things that other teams have had that success with. The fact that they play a lot of single-high defense, it seems like there’s a lot of opportunity.
Johnson has 10 catches for 153 yards in two games, including a 72-yard touchdown reception in a 25-21 loss to Arizona last week. Detroit is 1-1. It beat Minnesota 34-32 in Week 1 as Johnson had four catches for 37 yards. The 27-year-old has four seasons with 1,100 receiving yards and last year posted a career-high 1,964 to lead all NFL receivers by 366 yards.
“I’ve played him in college and played him in the NFL and watched him now,” said Redskins cornerback Josh Wilson, who was at Maryland when Johnson was a rising star at Georgia Tech. “He just goes and gets the ball. He knows how to separate the defender from the ball and give his quarterback a great opportunity to make a completion.”
There’s a chance Detroit could be without one of its major weapons against Washington, however, and that could change the looks Johnson sees. The Lions lost running back Reggie Bush to injury midway through the second quarter of the Arizona game on Sunday when he took a helmet to the knee.
Bush returned, but fumbled in the third quarter and didn’t play a snap after that. Detroit coach Jim Schwartz said on a conference call on Wednesday that Bush has no structural damage, but whether he will play this week remains in doubt.
Still, rookies Bacarri Rambo, a safety, and David Amerson, a corner, will have their hands full, too. Johnson expects veteran DeAngelo Hall to cover him primarily. But if the Redskins hope to slow him down it will take more than one player.
Gang tackling will be an emphasis across the board this week, linebacker London Fletcher said. Rambo and Amerson, especially, need to make tackles when they have the chance. Detroit will always know where they are on the field.
“Usually you try to go at those guys, you try to put them in difficult situations where they have to make a decision,” Johnson said. “A lot of times that inexperience leads to the offense being able to make a big play. We’ll see how well-coached those guys are and how much they rely on their technique and coaching when it comes to game time.”
Detroit doesn’t have a Michael Vick at quarterback. It won’t be running a spread offense with quarterback Matthew Stafford as Philadelphia did. There are similarities, however, with Green Bay, which gashed Washington time and again on short passes.
“You can never get too far from who you are,” Schwartz said. “You can end up chasing two rabbits in one of those ways and everybody knows if you chase two rabbits, you don’t catch any.”
© Copyright 2013 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
About the Author
- Matt Williams doing all he can to immerse himself in Nationals organization
- 2013 MLB winter meetings: What to watch for in Orlando
- RG3's relationship with Shanahans a work in progress
- Doug Fister addition lets Nationals rest easy with rotation
- Redskins notes: Tight end Jordan Reed suffers concussion setback
Latest Blog Entries
- MLB Winter Meetings: Nats acquire lefty reliever Jerry Blevins
- MLB Winter Meetings: Nats GM Rizzo denies heavy trade talk for Storen, Clippard
- MLB Winter Meetings: The Nats' plan if Wilson Ramos can't stay healthy
- MLB Winter Meetings: Can Danny Espinosa play third base, too?
- MLB Winter Meetings: McLouth signing adds depth to Nats outfield
By Donald Lambro
Growth spikes are little more than trend-free anomalies
- Rand Paul: Budget deal 'shameful,' 'huge mistake'
- Tea partiers turn on Capitol Hill budget deal
- Teen thugs in D.C. run wild -- even while wearing GPS ankle bracelets
- Leon Panetta named as source of 'Zero Dark Thirty' scriptwriters information
- CARSON: Why did the founders give us the Second Amendment?
- U.S. pilot scares off Iranians with 'Top Gun'-worthy stunt: 'You really ought to go home'
- American bourbon now better than Scottish whisky: U.K.-born expert
- Obama's antics at Nelson Mandela tribute: Jovial conversation, handshake with Raul Castro
- Obama takes 'selfie' at Mandela's funeral service
- VEGAS RULES: Harry Reid pushed feds to change ruling for casino's big-money foreigners
Independent voices from the The Washington Times Communities
Interviews and show reviews from the Los Angeles punk scene past and present. Los Angeles has always been rich in punk rock talent since punk rock was born.
Buzz on Bees is a column promoting the love and life of God’s greatest pollinators on earth: The Honeybee
Brazen, leading-edge, “call it like it is” columns and reporting from Ohio native, radio host and writer, Sara Marie Brenner.
A libertarian look at breaking news and political trends by author Tom Mullen.
Extraordinary day at Redskins Park
White House pets gone wild!
Let it snow