Is Calvin Johnson planning an NFL return? If so, he will have plenty of teams interested in seeing what he has left in the tank, including the Oakland Raiders. Sports Illustrated sparked a wave of rumor possibilities on Tuesday evening when they posted Johnson in an Oakland Raiders uniform with a caption reading “Marshawn Lynch came out of retirement to join the Raiders. Could Calvin Johnson do the same?”

Detroit Lions looking to bring Johnson back?

While the thought of Johnson potentially becoming a part of the Oakland Raiders would surely have fans in the Bay area ecstatic, CJ’s former team, the Detroit Lions, has reportedly offered him an olive branch to return to Motown.

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ESPN indicated that the Detroit Lions have extended their former receiver an invitation to Training Camp next month, which seems a bit curious considering some recent comments Johnson made about his time in Detroit.

While in Italy, Johnson recently told reporters that he doesn’t believe that the Lions have what it takes to be a winning team right now and that he was not happy how his relationship with the organization ended.

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Nevertheless, WJR radio in Detroit reported that Detroit Lions Team President Rod Wood did invite Johnson to training camp. Wood indicated that he would love to have Johnson back in the fold, and the team would rather have the Lions all-time yardage receiver on their side than playing for someone else.

Like any retired player who decides to make a go of it one more time, Johnson can apply for reinstatement with the league at any time.

While he would still be under contract with the Lions, Detroit may not want to take on Johnson’s salary, which would put a pretty big hit on their salary cap for 2017.

Johnson to join Lynch in Oakland?

Raider Wire reported that when Johnson retired from football last season, he helped the Lions clear over $11 million in salary cap space. However, heading into 2017, the Lions have just $5.75 million in cap space, meaning Johnson’s massive cap hit could force Detroit to have no choice but to release him.

If that were the case, Johnson would be free to sign with any team that had an interest in him.

Johnson recently went on record saying that he thinks Derek Carr is one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL today, and wouldn’t mind lining up on offense with him, that is of course if he was still playing, wink, wink. Add that little tease dropped by CJ to the fact that he has recently played a few rounds of golf with Carr and current Raiders coaches Todd Downing and Jack Del Rio, and we may be on the verge of seeing another Pro-Bowl player coming out of retirement to suit up for the Silver and Black very soon.

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With many NFL training camps set to open next week, the NFL rumor mill will definitely be heating up!

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