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Lions safety C.J. Gardner-Johnson has never been afraid to talk trash to a Tampa Bay Buccaneers starting quarterback, whether it's Tom Brady or current starter Baker Mayfield. He has now walked the walk after talking his talk about both quarterbacks, something he did early in Detroit's 31-23 victory that sent them on to their first NFC Championship game since the 1991 season. 

Gardner-Johnson famously talked plenty of smack to Brady while he was a part of the NFC South rival New Orleans Saints defense, and he backed up his trash talk by intercepting him twice in their five career meetings. 

He talked trash about Mayfield last week, downplaying the Buccaneers quarterback's abilities while discussing the Rams receiving duo of Cooper Kupp and Puka Nacua.

"This group (of Rams WRs) probably is one of the better groups we done faced all year, besides that Tampa group," Gardner-Johnson said, via the Detroit Free Press. "If you give that Tampa group a good quarterback, that's a great group. [Mike] Evans, [Chris] Godwin, [Russell] Gage, that's a great group. I played against them for real."

Mayfield clapped back with a witty reply at his weekly media availability prior to the game.   

"I don't think he's really watched film, because he mentioned Russell Gage," Mayfield said, via Sports Illustrated. "We love Russell, but Russell didn't play a snap all year for us. He must be going off preseason stuff that the media was talking about.... (Gardner-Johnson) didn't play in our first game, so I'm excited to see him. I think he's a really good player. He has been for a while. He's been an impactful guy on every team he's been on. He's a good player, but, yeah, he's got to do a little more film study." 

Gardner-Johnson did miss the two teams' Week 6 matchup, a game the Lions won 20-6, marking the fewest points the Buccaneers have scored in a game this season. It was the only game in which Mayfield had more interceptions (one) than passing touchdowns (none). 

On the Buccaneers first possession of the game in Sunday's divisional-round game in Detroit, Gardner-Johnson announced his presence to Mayfield. The Lions safety capitalized on a pass deflecting off of Pro Bowl receiver Mike Evans' hands and into the air by corralling the football for an interception. 

Gardner-Johnson was pushed out of bounds along the Buccaneers sideline at the tail end of his 12-yard return, and he made sure to flip the intercepted football back to Mayfield as he jogged away. Gardner-Johnson was further validated when the Lions got the last laugh too after linebacker Derrick Barnes hauled Mayfield's second pick of the day on his final throw.