Gunther Cunningham joins in as Lions pile on Cris Carter


It’s been several weeks since Cris Carter snubbed Calvin Johnson while naming the top receivers in football, but the Detroit Lions are still not letting it go.

This week Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford scoffed at Carter, and today Lions defensive coordinator Gunther Cunningham got into the mix.

Cunningham wasn’t even asked about Carter directly, he was simply asked about how Johnson’s presence on the practice field has helped the Lions’ cornerbacks. But Cunningham decided to take a swipe at Carter anyway.

“Whoever said he said he’s not one of the top four receivers, that has got to be the dumbest statement I’ve ever heard,” Cunningham said. “I believe I know who said it, and I’ve been on the practice field with that young man. Cris Carter is a helluva player, but hey, let’s give credit where credit is due. Calvin Johnson, my gosh.”

For the record, what Carter really said is that Johnson is not one of the top five receivers in the league, although Carter mentioned six players — Andre Johnson, Larry Fitzgerald, Greg Jennings, Reggie Wayne, DeSean Jackson and Roddy White — when naming the receivers he viewed as better than Megatron.

Carter’s comments seem to have become something of a rallying point inside the Lions’ locker room, even though Johnson himself shrugged it off, choosing instead to prove Carter wrong with the quality of his play.

95 responses to “Gunther Cunningham joins in as Lions pile on Cris Carter

  1. It’s Andre Johnson and Calvin Johnson 1 and 2 either order then everybody else.

    The others are all fine receivers, but not really close to Andre and Calvin.

  2. Reggie Wayne? Desean jackson??? Are you serious Carter? Reminds me of those analysts who still thought McNabb was a top 10 qb before the start of last year…
    It goes-
    1.andre johnson
    3.Larry fitz
    4.Roddy white
    5.could be a few guys…just different ill say Miles Austin/dez bryant will have the numbers at 5 come the end of the year

  3. Gunther is crazy, crotchety, and hilarious! Nobody is safe from his tirades, not his own players or anyone else.

  4. I love CC but hey he’s a Vike so I’m bias. I think he’s a little off on this one though. Calvin is a top 5 wideout. … off subject, I saw CC once and he was walking outside downtown toward the Marriot and I didn’t recongnize him until he was right in front of me. All I said was “touchdown” and he just nodded. I still laugh about it.

  5. Chris Carter like most of the ex. player talent at ESPN doesnt think before he opens his mouth. Now watch him defend it this weekend and on Mike and Mike monday, saying “what I meant was”…………

  6. doucheSean jackson…..really??? he has 5 catches for 50 yards in the last two games combined!!! chris Carter must’ve been smoking something when he made that comment!

  7. Carter did initially make those comments a few weeks ago, but he also made some more idioctic comments about Johnson’s un-eliteness this week as well.

    I think it’s safe to say that Cris Carter the player may have been a great one, but Cris Carter the commentator is an idiot.

    Green Bay fan here. Calvin Johnson has been an elite receiver for a while now. In four years, he’s piled up over 4,000 yards receiving. And that’s with the collective garbage that Detroit has had at quarterback throwing him at the ball (Stafford excluded).

    So Carter, you say Fitz is elite and Johnson isn’t? When both of them had rejects at QB throwing to them last year, both guys had over 1,100 yards receiving — they were only 17 yards apart. And Johnson only played 15 games! He averaged more YPC than Fitz, and had twice as many TD catches.

    That’s no disrespect to Fitz. He’s an absolute monster. But so is Johnson.

    Shut the hell up, Cris Carter. You make idiotic comments in order to get attention, and make it more about you than the players and teams you’re talking about. Tool.

  8. Carter needs to just go ahead and put this to rest by coming out and saying he was wrong.

    By now I’m sure he’s well aware, but until he retracts his statement publicly he’s gonna keep getting hammered while Megatron keeps smashing haters.

  9. Giving Calvin Johnson the nickname Megatron is the only lasting positive thing Roy Williams did with his time in Detroit… well, besides being part of a fleecing of Dallas too.

  10. Cris Carter is a big homer. It’s the same guy who picks the Vikings to win every week even though they are horrible. He probably also thinks Bernard Berrian is better than Calvin. He’s a joke.

  11. Beat Dallas on the road and then Lions fans can start talking. Beating the Buc, Chiefs, and Vikings really doesn’t show much.

    A lot of talent in Detroit, but lets not get too ahead of ourselves. Only 2 years removed from 0-16!

  12. Wow, if Lions players and coaches are spending time worrying about Chris Carter comments, I’m changing my bets the Cowboys.

  13. So glad I have Megatron on my fantasy team. The guy has really stepped it up this year. If everyone including Stafford and Jahvid Best can stay healthy, the Lions will go far this year.

  14. seneca1ss says:
    Sep 30, 2011 3:29 PM
    its fun when people get piled on (I pile on my neighbor’s wife while he works and she spends his money)

    People fight for marriage in the U.S. with mind-sets like this?

    On topic, Johnson is a hell of a player. To not include someone with his size,speed and strength is ridiculous. There is something with players his size at that positive that is priceless. Thats the ability to out muscle and out jump the opponet and get those jump balls. With the body control this man has and the ability to seperate and just be an all out distraction- its amazing. ESPN is a joke and it’s run like a high school, much like the pro-bowl- its all based on popularity and not stats. I’ll be expecting Carter to be in the top five for inserting foot into mouth this year.

  15. Megatron is in the top 5. I would take him over Greg Jennings. No offense. If I was picking wide receivers, I don’t even know if I would take Andre Johnson over him. But that’s just me…

  16. Everyone knows the book on DoucheSean Jackson. Even with his FORTY SEVEN CATCH season, people acted like he was a Top 10 WR. He’s just a one trick pony like Alvin Harper was. Play a shell and he can’t get behind you. He can’t catch and he was scared to death of Dunta Robinson and Ken Phillips the past two weeks and alligator armed passes in each of those games.

  17. @steviaquinn: How is 3-0 hype? And 2 of those were whippings. You can only play who is on your schedule dum-dum.

  18. It just seems like the Lions players and coaches sure are running their mouth a lot.

    3-0 over teams with a combined record of 2-7 does not make them the juggernaut they seem to think they are (they were fortunate to play an inept 2nd half team like the Vikings).

    They are good and have talent, but I would prefer to see them accomplish something first. 3-0 is a good start, but in the end it doesn’t mean a whole lot if they don’t make the playoffs.

  19. “that has got to be the dumbest statement I’ve ever heard”

    Apparently Gunther was not in attendance on January 23, 1999 when Carl Peterson said to the assembled Kansas City Chiefs media . . “I’m pleased to announce that the new head coach of the Kansas City Chiefs is Gunther Cunningham.”

  20. Rob Freakin’ Gronkowski has more receptions, more yards, a higher yards per catch, and one less TD than ‘Megatron.’

    May I suggest ‘Gronkatron?’

  21. I wasn’t crazy about the choice when we hired Gunther but I have really come to love the guy. Besides putting together a good defense he is always good for an amusing soundbyte or two. A bonus is he is unlikely to ever be a head coaching candidate so it keeps good continuity for the team.

  22. Also, if they don’t fix that o-line, Stafford is going to get killed. He’s only been sacked 5 times (all against the Vikings), but he’s been hit a lot.

  23. It’s Andre Johnson and Calvin Johnson
    1 and 2 either order then everybody
    The others are all fine receivers, but
    not really close to Andre and Calvin.


    Sorry, but I’m taking Fitz.

  24. polishrod says: Sep 30, 2011 3:17 PM

    Megatron looks great in a uniform, but he needs to be more consistent.
    2 TDs caught in each game in the first three games of the season….but yes, he needs to be more consistent.

    steviaquinn says: Sep 30, 2011 3:19 PM

    The lions hype is out of control. Lets see them beat a good team
    The Lions were the last team to beat the Packers in a regular season game. They beat them with their 3rd string QB playing. But that’s right, they haven’t beaten any good teams yet. Tampa Bay isn’t very good, are they?

    kqole25 says: Sep 30, 2011 3:42 PM

    Beat Dallas on the road and then Lions fans can start talking. Beating the Buc, Chiefs, and Vikings really doesn’t show much.

    A lot of talent in Detroit, but lets not get too ahead of ourselves. Only 2 years removed from 0-16!
    Of course, and then if they beat Dallas, everyone will say “well, who has Dallas beaten? Beat Chicago on MNF and then you’ll have proved yourself. After all, Dallas is a banged up team” Right?

    Tampa Bay is a good young team that ended 10-6 last season, and just got better in the off-season, not worse. 0-16 is now a distant memory.

  25. The funny thing about this is, for a team and fan base that has been in the cellar for quite some time, they act like they have won something. Don’t get me wrong, I am glad they are finally having some success. They deserve it. The Lions and their fans should realize though that they still haven’t proven anything. The only team they “beat” were the Chiefs. Until they play Green Bay, New Orleans, etc. Then they can talk.

    The last 8 games on their schedule are brutal and will show what this team is made of. So until then, enjoy your success and act like a professional.

  26. Johnson should ask what business a #2 wide receiver who thrived in Randy Moss’s shadow has ranking #1 receivers.

  27. CC calls himself a man of god and his ego is this bad?
    he needs to look at himself in the mirror and smell what he’s shoveling! he’s worthy being in the hof,but as long as he acts like this,nobody is gonna vote him in!
    i think fitzgerald is the league’s best wr,with calvin johnson a very close second.

  28. Desean Jackson has 153 yrds in 3 games!!!! thats it and 1 TD
    How many have that this year in 1 game


  29. I’m not a Lions fan, but Calvin Johnson is a great player and a class guy. I don’t care where Chris Carter ranks him, I’d take him on my team in a heartbeat. Chris Carter says a lot of stupid things. Why do people listen.

  30. No, no, no, no, no. You see you need to complain about everything and tell everyone how great you are/were all the time in order to be a great receiver.

    In Cris Carter’s world Megatron sucks just like that other guy…what was his name….Jerry….no Marvin Harrison. Oh yeah that’s right Jerry Rice was also a quiet hard working guy who trained so intensely and so much in the offseason he didn’t have time to talk about how great he was.

  31. Let the numbers do the talking – 4th in rec, 4th in total yds, 4th in avg yds, 1st in TD by a long shot.

    Cris don’t open your mouth, when you don’t know what your talking about.

    Player Games Rec Total Yds Avg Yds TD
    Larry FitzGerald 3 15 259 17.3 2
    Andre Johnson 3 21 316 13.6 2
    Greg Jennings 3 18 263 14.6 2
    Reggie Wayne 3 14 196 14 1
    DeSean Jackson 3 10 153 15.3 1
    Roddy White 3 20 224 11.2 1
    Calvin Johnson 3 16 225 14.1 6

  32. I’m amazed how many people on the Lions care enough about what Cris Carter has to say that they keep bringing it up. What analysts say means absolutely nothing. Why cant people wrap their heads around that?

  33. polishrod says:
    Sep 30, 2011 3:17 PM
    Megatron looks great in a uniform, but he needs to be more consistent.

    Polishrod….are you on Crack?…Megatron is the only reciever with2 touchdowns in EACH of this first 3 games….How much more consistent do you want!!

  34. At the end of the season, Carter will something stupid like, “I said that to motivate Calvin, and it worked…he has shown he’s one of the best in the league, thanks to me and the crack I smoke.”

  35. Top 10 WR 2011

    1. Calvin Johnson – DET
    2. Andre Johnson – HOU
    3. Steve Smith – CAR
    4. Larry Fitzgerald – ARZ
    5. Wes Welker – NE
    6. Brandon Marshall – MIA
    7. Roddy White – ATL
    8. Steve Johnson – BUF
    9. Vincent Jackson – SD
    10. Sidney Rice – SEA

  36. MDS should not be allowed to report anything on the Lions anymore. He gets every single story wrong.

    The Lions are not saying what they’re saying out of remembrance, they’re saying what they’re saying because Carter, in all his stubborn ways, decided to reiterate his comments again Monday. Once again he claimed Calvin Johnson was not elite.

    Get it right or give up reporting.

  37. After all is said and done Megatron (which yes, is the sweetest nickname ever) has done the classy thing and taken the high road. The fact that his teammates and coach have come to defense speaks massive measures about the respect that he has earned from them. Perhaps there are a few players (and former players) that could learn from his example.

  38. The funny thing is the people saying the “Lions hype is out of control” are mostly Eagles fans and/or teams in the NFC North.

    I’m a Giants fan and I am happy about the Lions being relevant again. Why can’t you be?

  39. Top 10 WR 2011

    1. Calvin Johnson – DET
    2. Andre Johnson – HOU
    3. Steve Smith – CAR
    4. Larry Fitzgerald – ARZ
    5. Wes Welker – NE
    6. Brandon Marshall – MIA
    7. Roddy White – ATL
    8. Steve Johnson – BUF
    9. Vincent Jackson – SD
    10. Sidney Rice – SEA


    1. Calvin Johnson.
    2. Larry Fitzgerald.
    3. Andre Johnson.
    4. Wes Welker.
    5. The Only Steve Smith.
    6. Hakeem Nicks.
    7. Vincent Jackson.
    8. Roddy White.
    9. Jeremy Maclin.
    10. Greg Jennings.

  40. megatron will prove to be #1 after this year mark my words, who else is built like a defensive end, with 4.3 speed, 42″ vertical (therefore he is always open up top, unless your average height cb can jump 80) and hands to go with it? Don’t forget he had 1200 yards the year the Lions went 0-16, with 5 different rag armed qb’s. Last year he was a Pro Bowler with backup qb’s and no running game. Just wait folks, just wait

  41. everybody needs to stop crying cuz the lions are actually good, i’ve been waiting for this my whole life. Unless you are a Bills or Green Bay fan what is teams record????? Yeah thats right

  42. and to those who say randy moss was the best, what happened when he was with the raiders? Why did he keep getting cut? Because he took plays/games/seasons off. He coulda been the best, he just didn’t work for it

  43. Calvin has the most rec. T.D’s in the league since he was drafted…nuff said I would take him over ANYONE!

  44. Carter’s issue: His stats something like 27 tds through first 5 yrs. Megatron in his 5th is at 39 and counting. Carter knows he didn’t start scoring until Moss showed up and he never saw double coverage again.

  45. Carter looks like Godzuki. Go ahead, and Google a live action image. Spittin’ image.

    I think he looks like elmo

  46. Gunther is freaking awesome. He’s like Bobby Ross, but with a personality. Perfect coach for this D.

    Smiff, you should be writing for Lady’s Home Journal.

    Go Lions! Go Badgers!

  47. Detroit Lions are known for overusing their players and they end up on IR. Give it time, it will happen again. Whoops, Calvin is listed as probable in week 4 because of an ankle injury.

  48. That’s funny,you just look that up? He’s been probable from the start of the year, players get banged up, its part of the game…it just goes to show how much of a gamer he is…he’ll have 8 tds in 4 weeks just watch.

  49. Infinite – do you not understand what “probable” means? You might want to check the stats before you spout. Stafford has 6 solid options on his offense and all of them will hurt a defense. If anything, CJ is under used due to the many options Stafford has. Dallas has no chance this weekend.

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