Stevie Johnson: "I've been chasing that since Pittsburgh"

Posted Sep 15, 2013

The Bills wide receiver talks about his game winning touchdown catch and the 24-23 victory over the Panthers.


On the final play, winning touchdown pass from EJ (Manuel):

There were options for myself and Chris Hogan. Hogan came in and it was pretty much a two man route depending on what the defense does. And then EJ (Manuel) pulls the trigger on whichever one he chooses.

On if he was surprised that two guys covered Chris Hogan and left him wide open:

7-11 (Chris Hogan). His presence was felt. When the play was called the guy was calling the corner. He was telling the guy to go to corner but there was miscommunication by them and EJ took advantage of it and we ended up scoring and winning.

On if he would’ve had a chance the catch the ball on the pass interference play:

Yeah, definitely. I feel like I had the catch and EJ put it there. Fortunately, but unfortunately I guess for my stats, but they had him calling the right call and we made plays after that so that was huge.

On not winning a lot of close games in recent seasons and what this type of win will do for this team:

I feel like it can’t be negative at all especially after a win. But then a win like that, new staff, it’s their first win. We invest so much into this game as far as being on the sideline, talking, communicating with each other coming from last week and how things went. I think we grew up in a week. I’m proud of this team.

On if EJ was encouraged to lean on the veterans during the final drive:

No, he was focused. He was locked in. He wasn’t saying I need you or I need you. He was in there like the number one quarterback that he was and he drove us down there. I don’t want to take a ton of attention off of the offense but a lot of credit goes to the defense for stopping the Carolina Panthers. They had two possessions where they could’ve easily scored. They were in the red zone and we stopped them and held them to a field goal.

On who he was hugging in the stands after the touchdown:

The Mrs., Britney. I was hugging my wife and then my son was out there. That’s just a credit to the fans. They were behind us, talking to us the entire time, just riding with us. We appreciate that for real.

On being upset after the play where he was open in the back of the end zone then talking with Fred Jackson on the sideline and how long it took him to get over that play:

As soon as we got back out there I was over it. I’m impatient. On Sunday’s I’m ready to get back out there when we make a mistake. The guys rallied around me and let me know that we still have action in winning this game. Freddy’s (Jackson) been doing that with me since I’ve been here. I’m just proud of this team. We fought back and we won.

On not talking to EJ after the play and staying away from him on the sideline:

I didn’t want to put any unnecessary pressure on him, you know? That’s the last thing I wanted to do to EJ. I felt like he could control this team being a rookie so I didn’t want to do anything extra. It’s harder than it looks to build chemistry. We’re working on it each day. Every Sunday we’ve got to come out and perform.

On if he was surprised at EJ coming back after giving up two turnovers like he did:

No, I’m not surprised because he doesn’t seem like a rookie. Those plays happen, turnovers. The Panthers are out there fighting also. I think we just showed that we have what it took to win this Sunday because the Panthers came out, we got a turnover on them and usually the opposing team wins the game when the Panthers turned the ball over. They came back and fought hard and we fought harder.

On if he thought there were some extra things he could take advantage of with so many injuries to the Panthers secondary:

No, not at all. Whether they were injured or not I felt like, I don’t want this to be taken the wrong way, I felt like our receivers or our offense can take advantage of any defense. No disrespect to them but when they did start falling down, corners, I felt like we had to take advantage of them.

On what this type of win does to help the culture of this team:

I can’t say this was the Super Bowl. The feeling was great. I can’t lie, the feeling was great. It was ecstatic in there but it’s Week Two, it’s Week Two. We’ve got to shake it off and bounce back and get ready for the Jets.

On being young on offense and defense and seeing what the team did at the end of the game:

We believe in each other. We believe in each other 100-percent from the special teams, to the defense, to the offense. The defense showed up. This is the second week in a row where they’ve showed up. We’ve still got to catch up to them. That’s our challenge as an offense. The special teams, they’re solid but the offense we could still be on another level. We’ve got to play catch up with our defense so we can be a balanced team.

On being a part of watching EJ bring the team back like he did:

Just tracking back to his college days, he’s won games like that. He’s been in big situations. For him to get that or to control, for him to win the game like that being on the 20-yard line and working the entire field like that with no timeouts, that was big for him. I think he earned a lot of respect, if he didn’t have respect for him in the beginning we’re trippin’ but I think he earned a lot of guys respect on this team.

On catching the winning touchdown and what was going through his head:

It was a play we ran earlier and we missed on it. I pretty much got a corner route on that play and like I said, the defender was yelling “check the corner, check the corner”, to the outside guy but with Chris Hogan in there you’ve got to respect him. When he come underneath you better jump on “7-11” and they just left me wide open. It was just a play where we took advantage of their miscommunication.

On if anything was going through his mind while the ball is in the air:

I was surprised I was that wide open because listening to the defense and I thought the guy was going to jump out late or something but he didn’t so we made the play and won.

On the idea of still having to make the catch while being wide open:

I’ve been chasing that since Pittsburgh. I’ve been chasing that play since Pittsburgh. I’m happy that it happened. But at the end of the day it’s still Week Two and we’ve got to get back to work.

On if his hands, wrists are ok:

Yeah. It’ll be cool. It’ll be alight. I’ll be alright.