In 2008, running back Chris Johnson set an NFL Combine record by turning into a ball of flames, running the 40-Yard Dash in 4.24-seconds. Buffalo Bills return man Dri Archer came close to knocking Johnson off his pedestal by posting a 4.26 40 during the 2016 NFL Combine, but that’s the closest anyone has come to pushing Johnson’s name down to second on the list.
Since 2013, adidas has added to the spectacle of the 40 by offering sizable amounts of cash and an endorsement deal with the brand to the NFL prospect who posts the fastest 40 time wearing a pair of the brand’s cleats.
Last year, they offered $1 million to anyone who could break Johnson’s record, and since it didn’t happen, they are upping the ante again heading into Thursday’s 2017 installment of the Combine.
Adidas will give the man who breaks 4.24 in a pair of adidas adizero 5-Star 40 cleats (shown above) his own private island. Like, if Julius Peppers breaks the record, he’ll get to hop on a jet and cruise over to Peppers Island, where he can build sand castles and harvest coconuts to his heart’s desire. Where said island is located and how big said island is remain to be seen, but regardless, all of this is totally amazing and insane.
For our money, Kentucky running back Boom Williams and Washington wide receiver John Ross have the best shot at dethroning Johnson. Williams ran a 4.28 40 when he was a ninth-grader, and IMG’s speed coordinator Dwight Phillips, who’s been training him ahead of the Combine, told STACK that Williams could legitimately run a 4.2 in Indianapolis.
Williams certainly isn’t short on confidence either. He said, “A cheetah is fast, aggressive. I think that’s me on the field. I have the same mentality. When a cheetah sees something that it wants, it goes and gets it. When I want something on the field, I try to be that cheetah and be fast and make plays. So I think I’m pretty comparable to a cheetah.”
Ross got a head start by training in the 5-Star 40 cleat, and as you can see below, the dude’s footwork and acceleration are out of this world.
Boom Island has a pretty good ring to it. So does Ross Island. Really, we just want someone to break Johnson’s record so adidas has to follow through with its amazingly ridiculous promise.
RELATED: Kentucky RB Boom Williams Ran a 4.28 40-Yard Dash in 9th Grade. Now He’s Poised to Demolish the NFL Combine