Former NFL wide receiver Cris Carter has never been one to hold back his opinion, especially when it comes to young guys who play his position.
So it was no surprise the future Hall of Famer had plenty to say about Stevie Johnson's dropped touchdown pass in overtime during the Bills' 19-16 loss to the Steelers.
Carter suggested on ESPN Radio's Mike and Mike in the Morning on Monday that Johnson's miscues (he had five drops in the game) were tied to him spending too much time basking in the glory of all the national media attention he received last week.
"Steve Johnson's great game that he had against Cincinnati, and then we had him on ESPN Monday Night [Countdown] in the 'C'mon Man' [segment] as far as him coming to the press conference in his tank top T-shirt. And he was on a lot of shows on ESPN. One thing that he doesn't realize you have to be focused every week. So he didn't drop that ball [Sunday], he dropped that ball last Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday where he kept talking about last week's game.
"This is a game of unbelievable focus, and catching the football is a skill. But it's still not a skill that you can use if you're not focused. And a young player, that's why they go up and down, week after week because they really can't handle success. And you really have to move on. The old cliche, 'Well, we're going to concentrate on next week's game,' if you want to be great in this league, you have to be consistent week after week, and you have to be able to control your emotions and control the hype that surrounds you."
Whether Johnson's lost focus on the dropped balls was due to the national publicity is worth debating. Sometimes it can be a good thing for a young guy to be brought down a peg when he's flying so high. It's a good way to keep them grounded.
We'll see how Johnson responds now that the attention he's getting is not very positive.
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