(ALLEN PARK) - The Lions attempted to get some short term help for their receiving
corps when they put in a claim for wide receiver Kevin Johnson off waivers from the Cleveland Browns. Johnson, a 5-11, 195-lb five-year veteran from Syracuse, is young (27),
talented and has the ability to make plays, however he was awarded to the Jacksonville Jaguars on the basis of the Jags 2-7 record, which is worse than Detroit's 3-6 mark.
To make room for Johnson, the Jaguars waived wide receiver J.J. Stokes. It is unknown if Detroit has any interest in Stokes.
Johnson was incensed when Cleveland head coach Butch Davis benched him after he dropped a fourth-down pass
that cost Cleveland a chance to keep a drive alive in a loss to San Diego. While
that was clearly a low point in Johnson's career, the statistics suggest that he
As a rookie Johnson had 986 yards receiving and after dipping to 669 yards receiving in 2000, had his finest year in 2001 when he went over 1,000 (1,097) yards and caught nine touchdowns.
Johnson, however, was claimed by four teams, including the Lions.
Detroit was willing to assume Johnson's current contract, which includes a $2.5 million option bonus. He still could become a Lions at season's end when he could declare himself a free agent.
Detroit today put injured cornerback Rod Babers and wide receiver Shawn Jefferson were placed on injured reserve today freeing up two rosters spots which were filled by running back Paul Smith, a four-year veteran from San Francisco 49'ers and former Lion offensive lineman Kerlin Blaise.