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Posted at 11:25 AM ET, 03/15/2012

Calvin Johnson credits Peyton Manning and Mom for his record-setting deal


Calvin Johnson seems pretty happy with his new contract. (Daniel Mears / AP)

Peyton Manning may not have made up his mind about just where he’ll play, but he influenced Calvin Johnson’s decision to sign a long-trm deal with the Detroit Lions.

The cash — a record-setting $132 million with $60 million guaranteed — was a huge factor, too, but so was the chance to stay in one place, Megatron said Wednesday.

“The comfort level you receive, being able to be in one place for a long time, is unlike any other,” Johnson said (via the Detroit Free Press). “Having security, not having to worry about where I'm going to be next year. And then two — having a good team, having a lot of guys locked up on this team that you've had success with, and that you just continue to grow with.”


“To the house and now ... to the bank!” (Bill Haber / AP)
Johnson, who is 26 and will be tied to the team through the 2019 season, is worth the dough. Last season, he joined Jerry Rice and Randy Moss as the only players with at least 95 receptions, 1,600 yards and 15 touchdowns in a season. Johnson finished with 96 receptions and 16 TDs and led the league with 1,681 yards.

“They were happy to get this thing done with, and I was happy as well,” Johnson said. “It wasn't a lot of confrontation. We weren't butting heads or anything. It was just something that we knew needed to get done.”

Playing a behind-the-scenes role was Johnson’s mother, Arica. “Bless my mom,” Johnson said. “Mom is everything to me. She takes care of so many things for me when I can't be there, especially in Atlanta with my foundation and things like that. Last night, things got pretty hectic because we were trying to get things done before midnight and trying to get things sent over because it affects the league with the league year.

“It got hectic on the phone because we were trying to get these papers shuffled around and stuff like that. I hear [Lions president] Tom Lewand on the other end. I hear Bus [Cook, Johnson’s agent] on one end of the phone. We had a little three-way, four-way going.”

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By  |  11:25 AM ET, 03/15/2012

 
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