ALLEN PARK, Mich. -- Calvin Johnson missed his first game of the season Sunday against Minnesota, and Detroit Lions coach Jim Caldwell did not rule out the possibility of sitting the star wide receiver the next two weeks, either.
When asked whether he would consider sitting Johnson until the team's bye week in Week 9, he didn't rule out the idea of not playing him against New Orleans and Atlanta.
"I do not hold a medical degree. It may appear I do from time to time to you, maybe, but I don't," Caldwell said. "The fact of the matter is I leave it up to the doctors. Those are the professionals. They know exactly what it takes.
"Them in conjunction with Calvin and how he feels, they treat not only symptoms of the situation but also the patient as well, in terms of how he feels. So they'll let us know what's the best path to take."
Johnson suffered a high right ankle sprain in the second half against Green Bay in Week 3 and was limited the following week against the New York Jets. In Week 5 against Buffalo, he had one catch for 7 yards, but aggravated the sprain on his one catch.
Last week, on Wednesday, Johnson said rest and treatment would be the way to heal the ankle. He has missed 9 of the last 11 full practices for Detroit as he tries to get healthy.
Without Johnson on Sunday, quarterback Matthew Stafford completed 19 of 33 passes for a season-low 185 yards. It is only the seventh time in Stafford's career that he has thrown for less than 200 yards in a game, the last coming in a blizzard against Philadelphia on Dec. 8, 2013.
Sunday was the first time Stafford won a game in his career when he threw for less than 200 yards as the Lions beat the Vikings 17-3.
Caldwell said he is taking a "wait and see" approach on Johnson and running backs Reggie Bush and Theo Riddick. Bush sat out the win over the Vikings with an ankle sprain, but said after the game he is "for sure" going to play against New Orleans on Sunday.
Riddick, who has been dealing with hamstring injuries throughout the season, aggravated the injury again Sunday against Minnesota and did not return.
"All three guys, I think, are coming along and improving rapidly," Caldwell said. "So we'll see."