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Stevie Johnson makes another catch against Darrelle Revis.
The rivalry between Stevie Johnson and Darrelle Revis hasn't got much national attention yet, but I believe you will be hearing and seeing more about this in the upcoming 2012 season.
Revis, without question, is one of the best shutdown cornerbacks in the NFL. He's skilled at taking out the best receiver of any opponent and basically eliminating him from the game plan. That's not exactly the case when it comes to Revis against the Buffalo Bills wide receiver Stevie Johnson.
Johnson is known as being a rather unpredictable wide receiver, because the Bills allow him the freedom to run unconventional pass routes. The basic premise to understand here is that the Bills allow Johnson to do whatever he wants to do to get from Point A to Point B but just make sure you get to Point B.
The Bills quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick knows Johnson well enough to know what he is trying to do and will anticipate that his throw will be on target to complete the pass.
It's because of this unorthodox approach that gives Revis difficulty in figuring out how to shut Johnson down. Let's take a look at the last four games and recent results between the two rivals.
2011 Week 9 in Buffalo: Johnson led the Bills team with three receptions for 84 yards, averaging 28 yards per catch. Johnson came up with a 52-yard catch against Revis, which just isn't supposed to happen.
Fitzpatrick targeted Johnson six times in the game. It should be noted that Fitzpatrick took a huge lick the prior week from London Fletcher that cracked three of his ribs and injured his sternum.
2011 Week 12 in New York: Johnson had eight receptions for 75 yards and one touchdown, averaging 9.4 yards per catch. Johnson was targeted 13 times by Fitzpatrick. When was the last time you heard a quarterback throwing 13 times at Revis? The longest completion was for just 16 yards.
2010 Week 17 in New York: Johnson caught five passes for 72 yards, including one pass that went for 33 yards. The Bills quarterback that day was Brian Brohm, as Fitzpatrick was hurt and couldn't play.
If you have watched Brian Brohm play quarterback (who's now out of the NFL), it's amazing that Johnson could have caught that many passes. He was targeted by Brohm 12 times.
2010 Week 4 in Buffalo: Trent Edwards was released by the Bills, and Fitzpatrick was now in as the starter. Fitzpatrick hadn't taken many reps or had much of a chance to work on chemistry with Johnson at this point in time. Nonetheless, Johnson caught three passes for 31 yards and a touchdown, off seven targets for the day.
That gives you a little more detail to be appreciative as to why this is going to be a strong rivalry going forward. It would help the rivalry if the Bills would defeat the Jets soon, as the Jets have won five straight against the Bills. In their past 11 meetings, New York has won seven times, while Buffalo has won four times.
Johnson has signed his contract extension in the offseason, so he isn't going anywhere. Revis wants a better deal and might be holding out. The Bills open up the 2012 season at the New York Jets. Maybe Revis wants to still be holding out from that game? Only kidding Jets fans, only kidding.