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Ex-Lion Johnson joins cast of ‘Dancing with the Stars’

Justin Rogers
The Detroit News

Calvin Johnson’s retirement from football is no longer the most unexpected decision he’s made this year.

According to an “Entertainment Tonight” report, the former Detroit Lions receiver will be a part of next season’s cast of “Dancing with the Stars.”

Among the names competing against Johnson will be former Texas Governor Rick Perry, rap star Vanilla Ice, Indy car driver James Hinchcliffe and Olympian Ryan Lochte.

One of the show's professional dancers, Lindsay Arnold, hinted at a pairing with Johnson last week.

The cast will be officially announced Tuesday on “Good Morning America.” Johnson’s season of “Dancing with the Stars” will premiere on Sept. 12 at 8 p.m. on ABC.

NFL players have a long history of competing on the show, from current stars Antonio Brown and Von Miller to Hall of Famers Emmitt Smith, Jerry Rice, Warren Sapp and Lawrence Taylor. Smith, Hines Ward and Donald Brown all won their respective seasons.

Johnson called it quits on his NFL career in March after nine seasons, all with the Lions. He finished with 731 receptions for 11,619 yards and 83 touchdowns, all franchise records. He also holds the NFL record for most receiving yards in a season, racking up 1,964 in 2012.