Calvin Johnson continues to have no relationship with the Lions

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Last year, former Lions receiver Calvin Johnson made clear the terms for rebuilding the bridge between player and team: Refund the signing bonus money they made him repay when he retired.

The team has yet to refund the refunded $1.6 million, which means that things have gotten no better between the Lions and their best player since Barry Sanders.

Via Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press, Johnson recently said that his relationship with the team currently is “nil.”

There’s no back and forth there,” Johnson said. “That’s fine with me. I’m handling my business, I’m sure they’re handling theirs.”

Johnson has spoken to the team’s receivers via Zoom at the request of Robert Prince, who continues to serve as the position coach. Otherwise, there’s nothing.

With ownership recently transitioning from Martha Firestone Ford to her daughter, Sheila Ford Hamp, maybe the team will have a change of heart.

Some would say that the Lions shouldn’t give Johnson his money back. The reality, however, is that if he hadn’t retired when he did, the Lions likely would have cut him — extinguishing any responsibility to refund bonus money.

16 responses to “Calvin Johnson continues to have no relationship with the Lions

  1. better than any receiver whos come after him. and im a big ole whodat big fan of mike thomas very familiar with the problem that is julio jones. megatron was another level though.

  2. The Lions got cap relief for that 1.6 million he refunded, so I get their wanting to keep that, but it seems like they could hire him to do some consulting work or something for 1.6 million plus interest now to smooth things over.

  3. “Johnson has spoken to the team’s receivers via Zoom at the request of Robert Prince, who continues to serve as the position coach. Otherwise, there’s nothing.”
    _____________

    So, except for this one fairly significant thing there’s nothing? That strongly suggests he isn’t mad at the current players or coaches which means he isn’t just entirely against the entire organization. I guess the question is “What exactly would a retired player be expected to be doing with his old team on an ongoing basis?”

  4. I don’t see where the Lions are wrong, here. Johnson was a great player but he quit on them with hardly any notice, and therefore he did not earn that signing bonus. To say the Lions would have cut him is a moot point, to me. The fact remains, they paid him that signing bonus because they thought he was going to play.
    This is on Johnson, from what I see.

  5. So this is only about money? Sorry but the Lions did nothing wrong. They had to plan for the future of their team not reward for past performance

  6. Why would he want to have a relationship with a team and an organization that has been a dumpster fire for decades despite having some truly generational players?
    Assumed that spending his entire playing career with them would have been more than enough.

  7. bigtimewhodat says:
    August 18, 2020 at 12:28 pm
    better than any receiver whos come after him. and im a big ole whodat big fan of mike thomas very familiar with the problem that is julio jones. megatron was another level though.

    I’d take Tyreek Hill over Calvin Johnson every day of the week. Tyreek is a Champion. He does things Calvin was incapable of doing.

  8. The owners’ lawyers prove again how smart they are compared the players’.
    A signing bonus in the business world is a dollar amount paid to the employee upon signing.

    In the NFL, due to the unAmerican and anti capitalism salary cap ( notice how billionaires want capitalism for themselves and socialism when it behooves them too? ), the signing bonus is pro-rated for the duration of the contract for salary cap purposes. So Jake Plummer’s and Calvin Johnson’s lawyers got taken to the woodshed and beaten down by corporate lawyers.

    You don’t get rich without being fully informed and ruthless, a lesson most never learn.

  9. NFL owners make millions and millions annually, making the return of a $1.6M bonus to a HOF team legend like change in a normal person’s pockets. The Lions apparently value those comparative pennies more than any relationship with their most famous former players.

  10. Uh great player, nice guy but I can’t side With him here. He got that payment as a bonus and was Forfeited the moment he retired On the the team. Isn’t sucks he can’t get over that cause I’m sure they would like to have him around in any capacity.

  11. Detroit knows how to treat their fan favorites – Lets go -Enter other NFC NORTH Team here- !!!

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