2016 NFL Free Agency Blog: Calvin Johnson Retires


Our free agency blog is a one-stop shop to all of the free agency news as it breaks during the NFL’s start of the new calendar year. Stop in early and often as we keep it updated.

Megatron Makes it Official

It’s apparently legends retirement week in the NFL as Peyton Manning hung up the cleats yesterday, along with Logan Mankins.  Today’s big news is Detroit Lions legendary receiver Calvin Johnson officially calling it quits.

Lions head coach Jim Caldwell had this to say:

“I’ve had the good fortune during my career to coach and be around some of the greatest players to ever play this game. And although I’ve only been with Calvin for two years, I can tell you that not only is he as good as any player I’ve ever seen, but I am convinced that God has not put a finer person on this earth than Calvin Johnson.

“He truly is one of the most remarkable people I’ve ever met and I have as much respect for him as anyone I know. Calvin’s character, integrity, selflessness and humility are unmatched. His exemplary work ethic and approach to the game of football made everyone around him better.

“And while we will undoubtedly miss Calvin on the field, I am at peace with his decision knowing he arrived at it with a lot of thought, consultation and prayer.”

Megatron has looked a little tired over the past few seasons so this announcement isn’t a huge surprise.

Where do the Lions go from here?

Wide receiver Golden Tate could be a No. 1 guy, but he’s better as a complement to a bigger receiver.  There is no actual replacement for Johnson available, either in free agency or the NFL Draft.

The Lions need to rebuild their offense around running the football instead of trying to find what isn’t there.  Look for them to look at wide receiver in the first round of the draft with potential candidates being Ole Miss WR Laquon Treadwell and TCU WR Josh Doctson.

The Lions could go after some free agent running backs as Doug Martin, Lamar Miller and Chris Ivory are all currently available.

Is Megatron a Hall of Famer? 

If he isn’t a HOF’er, I’m not sure who is.  With that said, it will be difficult for him to get in on the first ballot.  Peyton Manning is a first-ballot lock as well as Charles Woodson, who each retired this season.

About Charlie Bernstein

Charlie Bernstein

Charlie Bernstein is the managing football editor for Football Insiders and has covered the NFL for over a decade.  Charlie has hosted drive time radio for NBC and ESPN affiliates in different markets around the country, along with being an NFL correspondent for ESPN Radio and WFAN.  He has been featured on the NFL Network as well as Sirius/XM NFL Radio and has been published on Fox Sports, Sports Illustrated, ESPN as well as numerous other publications.