Houston says Moss is still dangerous

The Sports Xchange

--Cornerback Chris Houston still sees a dangerous threat when he watches 49ers receiver Randy Moss on film -- it's just a different kind of danger. "He's a smart receiver, possession guy," Houston said. "He can still take the top off the back end, but you know most defenses are going to play him to where they don't let him beat you deep, let him catch the little curl." Moss had four catches for 47 yards last week. "He didn't make his name, Moss, by catching curls," Houston said. "He made his name by going up and getting the ball. If you don't let him do that and just keep it conservative that's how teams are going to play him."

--Who says Jim Schwartz doesn't have anything nice to say about Jim Harbaugh? Schwartz was asked how much credit Harbaugh deserved for the 49ers' success last season. "That was a very difficult situation for all coaches, let alone a rookie coach that was installing a completely new system in the NFL with different players," Schwartz said. "Yeah, that's definitely worth, whatever -- a job well done for sure."

--If receiver Calvin Johnson has a Holy Grail in football, it's the Vince Lombardi Trophy. "That's what we play for," he said. "If you don't play for that in this league -- I don't want to say, 'then what are you here for?' -- but, kind of. That is what's wanted and what's dreamed about." But the concept of a 2,000-yard season has been raised and Johnson didn't exactly shrink from it. "It would be fantastic," Johnson said. "Look back at last season and there were a lot of things that we did miss. You won't ever be perfect, but it is possible." Nobody has ever achieved it. Johnson had 1,681 yards last year and felt like he left of bunch of yards on the field. "We will just take it one game at a time, OK?" said offensive coordinator Scott Linehan. "But I won't put anything past what Calvin can do. He's special."

--Johnson had 111 yards against the Rams, despite deep umbrella coverage and lot of chatter from Rams' defensive backs Cortland Finnegan and Janoris Jenkins. "My coach says the best way to earn your opponent's respect is to go out and beat them on every play," Johnson said. "It doesn't matter if they talk. If they do, that's just going to raise my intensity level even more. That don't help."

--The Lions were $700,000 over the salary cap after signing defensive back Drayton Florence the week before the opener and defensive end Kyle Vanden Bosch bailed them out. For the second time in two years, he agreed to restructure his contract. "I told Mr. (William Clay) Ford when I signed here that I would do anything I could to help the team," Vanden Bosch said. "I just want to win and we've got the guys in this locker room to do it." Vanden Bosch agreed to lower his base salary for 2012 from $5 million to the league minimum of $925,000, taking the remaining $4.075 million as a signing bonus. The move saved the Lions a little more than $3 million.

--The NFL admitted that an "honest mistake" was made by the clock operator at Ford Field at the end of the Lions' 27-23 victory over the Rams. Rams quarterback Sam Bradford slid to the turf near the Rams sideline and the clock was stopped with 2:38 to play, even though he stayed inbounds. Line judge Shannon Eastin restarted the clock a few seconds later. "The officials did not signal for it to stop," NFL spokesman Greg Aiello said. "The game clock was three seconds behind where it should have been." The mistake forced the Rams to call a timeout to avoid a delay of game penalty at 2:03. Without the mistake, they could have run the clock down to the two-minute warning. "In essence, Detroit was granted an extra time-out, I guess, if you want to look at it from our perspective," Rams coach Jeff Fisher said on Monday.

15 -- Sacks by Ndamukong Suh since 2010, second most by a defensive tackle in the NFL to 49ers Justin Smith (16).

"We want to go back and pay them back in their own house. We're definitely hungry for that one." -- WR Calvin Johnson, hungry for some payback against the 49ers, who beat them in Ford Field last season.

Copyright (C) 2012 The Sports Xchange. All Rights Reserved.


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