Chris Johnson is coming off the worst season of his NFL career, but he’s as confident as ever.
In addition to claiming that he’s still the best running back in the NFL and that he’s back to his "old self," Johnson is fairly certain he could give Olympic gold medalist Usain Bolt a run for his money.
Johnson, who was a track star in high school, thinks he could beat Bolt in a race under the right conditions.
"I feel like if I would have kept training for track I’d have a chance, but I play football and he runs track, so it’s totally different," Johnson told The Tennessean. "I think I could still probably beat him in the 40. If I actually trained for the distance he trained for, I think I’d have a chance."
Considering Bolt just broke his own Olympic record by posting a time of 9.63 seconds in the 100 meters, and is widely considered the fastest man alive, that’s some serious confidence coming out of Johnson.
Make no mistake about it, Johnson is fast — perhaps the fastest player in the NFL. His 4.24 40-yard dash time at the 2008 NFL combine still stands as the best mark to date. But going toe-to-toe with an Olympic sprinter — never mind one who has been as dominant as Bolt — is a whole other beast.
Johnson is confident, however, that his football training regimen could translate to track and field success, though he’s skeptical if the same could be said for the other way around.
"Training for football, we do a lot of short sprints — we do 40s and 50s and things like that. We don’t really train like track athletes," Johnson said. "If a track athlete tried to come play football it would be totally different [for Bolt]."
Bolt has made it clear he wants to give soccer a whirl. He hasn’t yet called out Lionel Messi, though.