The finest receiver on the planet was targeted just four times, but Lions offensive coordinator Joe Lombardi promises that wasn't by design.
"We had 47 reps, 40 before the 2-minute drive," Lombardi said, per the Detroit Free Press. "We certainly had plays that he's the primary, and for whatever reason, the situation didn't work out where he was the guy to throw to. I think if we had our 60 normal reps, you would've seen the ball go to him a few more times."
Lombardi noted that Detroit "didn't do a great job after that first drive" of staying on the field, saying that Megatron's "going to certainly get his touches this year, and I think that was an anomaly that we had this first game."
Lombardi pointed to Sunday's matchup with the Vikings and said of Johnson: "He'll get it in the future, trust me."
The Lions have a nice problem on offense, with quarterback Matthew Stafford surrounded by a flock of weapons in Johnson, wideout Golden Tate, tight end Eric Ebron and Offensive Rookie of the Year candidate Ameer Abdullah. The Lions don't have to target Megatron 15 times a game as in days of old, but they aren't reducing his role.
Whether the attack flows through Johnson or someone else, Detroit faces an almost must-win game in Minnesota. After blowing a 21-10 lead in San Diego, an 0-2 start would put the Lions into a deep hole with a brutal slate -- Denver, Seattle and Arizona -- ahead. We're going to find out in a hurry if this year's Detroit squad has the playoff potential of last year's club.