Saints coach Sean Payton impressed with Calvin Johnson, Lions' improvement
Johnson, who has 63 receptions for 1,023 yards and 12 touchdowns, is the focal point for defenses for good reason, Payton said Thursday, according to NOLA.com.
"There may be times when you won't have safety help over the top, then you have to understand clearly what you have to do underneath if you're the corner defending him," Payton said. "The challenge when you watch him on tape is the earned receptions where the coverage is good and he has the stature to go up and make a play above his head. He runs extremely well. With that combination of size and strong hands, those are the challenges. When you're in the right spot and he's able to elevate and make a play."
Payton also is concerned with the Lions' overall improvement in 2011 and the pass rush, even without Ndamukong Suh, who was suspended for two games by the NFL. Suh's appeal of the suspension was heard Thursday, but there is no timetable for the review.
"It's a team that has a lot of confidence in playing not only with a lead, but a lot of confidence in getting back into games," Payton said.
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DETROIT RED WINGS
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