Did Matthew Stafford relying on Calvin Johnson cause them to go 4-12?
A 10-6 team going 4-12 the following season is uncommon, but when the same young core still exists with the same staff then it makes it rare.
Stafford had over 700 pass attempts this season, and nearly 1/3 of those targets were to Calvin Johnson to set Jerry Rice's receiving yards record.
The key that Stafford's unrelentless reliance on Calvin Johnson is the fact that despite nearly 700 pass attempts, he only picked up only 20 TD's.
A lot of questions needs to be answered about whether or not Stafford using Calvin Johnson as a crutch on so many pass plays is causing their offense to sputter. He rarely ever looks off Johnson to even create the impression that he is going elsewhere with the ball.
He lost his 2, 3 and 4 WR. He really had no other option besides Calvin.
and Pettigrew for the last 3 games (I know he played vs Bears, but he certainly didn't see very many snaps).
Like has been mentioned multiple times previously. The lack of TDs is based on lack of passing play calls in the red zone, emergence of a running game in the red zone and of course bad luck.
Calvin Johnson alone has been tackled like 8 times on the 1 yard line.
Calvin has also dropped 2 TDs and had 1 called back for OPI
Pettigrew has dropped 4 TD passes (in the endzone)
Bad play calls:
Just look at this game and versus the Falcons game. Calvin Johnson had 1 target in 11 plays in the redzone and I don't recall him seeing any against the Bears today.
Emergence of a running game in the redzone:
Leshoure has 9 TDs and all of them came in the redzone.
2 of Joique Bell's came in the redzone
Stafford has also rushed for 4 TDs in the redzone
Linehan has really not looked at receivers in the redzone nearly as much as he did last year and with the other two things I mentioned (bad luck and bad play calling), that's why his TDs are down.
In no way am I defending Stafford's season as he needs to seriously work on his footwork and decision making, but the lack of TD's isn't because he solely relies on Calvin Johnson. Nor does his yardage. For comparisons sake, Marshall has a higher percentage of yards on the Bears than Calvin does for the Lions.
We also threw over 5000 yards, but that's because we have no running game to rely on. Outside of 2 consecutive runs of 20+ against the Texans our next longest is a Joique Bell 18 yard run. It's just brutal. That's what Stafford's yards/comp is pretty low.
Don't know why I waste time on a Fresno thread, but maybe you will think before making the next one