After a tough Atlanta loss, a lot of fans are ready to move on from Stevie Johnson. They say we need a true #1 WR and we do. Stevie is a slot WR. He knows it and the team knows it. So what is the big deal? We expect him to be the leader of the WRs and step up when necessary. After Stevie's fumble, it brings back memories of dropped TDs and other plays in which he had opportunities to make clutch plays but didn't.
I get it, you're frustrated. I'm frustrated. Hell, Stevie is frustrated. But trading our best receiver? Or even cutting him? We have the 3rd youngest team in the league and have some incredibly raw players at WR. If you cut him, our group becomes even less experienced than it already is, and that is not going to help your rookie QB make plays and take some of the pressure off.
I've heard it several times already. "Stevie can't make plays in the fourth quarter," "He is the opposite of clutch," "whenever we need him, he fails us." But where is the evidence of this? We've played 12 games right now (10 for Stevie). How many clutch plays were to be had in those 10 games he played in? How many did he not make when given an opportunity? If he is so terrible under pressure, then there should be a large amount of examples for people to spit off. Only there isn't. Because he isn't as bad as people make him out to be.
Fact: Stevie Johnson has played 72 games in the NFL.
Fact: Stevie Johnson has fumbled the ball 3 times in those 72 games.
Fact: Stevie Johnson has 5 drops on the season (1 every 2 games).
Fact: 25 WRs have more drops than Stevie Johnson.
Fact: Calvin Johnson has more drops than Stevie Johnson.
Fact: A.J. Green has more drops than Stevie Johnson.
So where is the evidence that he can't perform in clutch situations? How is it that he always seems to let us down when we need him most? People are calling for a true #1 WR like Calvin Johnson and A.J. Green, but both of those WRs have more drops than Stevie. Does that mean they aren't clutch, and they just perform well when the game isn't on the line?
He fumbled the ball, I get it. But our defense fumbled the game away with 31 points allowed. You can blame Stevie for the play (the DB made a good play on the ball) all you want. But you can't blame him for the loss because it never should have gotten to that point after our offense put up 31 points.
Sorry, this one falls on the defense and Mike Pettine.