In the NFL’s recently ranked All-Time Team, only ten wide receivers were selected. Those ten players were Lance Alworth, Raymond Barry, Larry Fitzgerald, Marvin Harrison, Elroy Hirsch, Don Hutson, Steve Largent, Randy Moss, Jerry Rice, and Paul Warfield. Shockingly, Calvin Johnson, a.k.a. Megatron, did not make the cut.
First off, I believe that if a player’s career was before the AFL-NFL merger, or the “Super Bowl era,” their stats are unreliable because it is hard to understand how much of their success came from the lack of competition in those times. Once the AFL and the NFL came together, the amount of different teams each franchise would have to play each season grew. And when a team has to play more opponents, they are stretched to meet the competitive standards of each team.
In justa career of 9 years, Calvin Johnson caught 731 passes for 11,619 yards. He also had 83 touchdowns and 552 first downs during that time. Perhaps the part that made him most dominant as a receiver was his build. At 6’5″ and 237 pounds, Megatron was able to run people over to get large gains on plays.
The only reason that I can think of as to why the NFL decided not to include Johnson on the All-Time Team, would be because he only played nine seasons. Similar to Megatron, Barry Sanders (10 seasons) and Rob Gronkowski (9 seasons) both cut their careers short unexpectedly. But somehow the league found a way to include both of those players and not Calvin Johnson? This is a complete double-standard.
Even though it is extremely unfortunate that Calvin Johnson was not included on the NFL’s All-Time Team, it doesn’t mean that he didn’t deserve to be. Johnson will be forever remembered in the football world as one of the most athletic receivers of all-time, regardless of awards.
By Mike Morbeck – Calvin Johnson, CC BY-SA 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=48786812