Over his decorated 12-year NFL career, Chad Johnson diced up nearly every defensive back that had the misfortune of lining up across from him.
The artist formerly known as Chad Ochocinco totaled 11,059 career receiving yards, in large part due to his mastery of route running. Excellent route running is what sets great receivers apart from the rest of the pack, as it allows you to create separation regardless of your speed or size.
To show off their route-running abilities, many current NFL receivers post insanely fancy drills on social media. Apparently, Johnson believes such drills don’t focus on the most important aspects of route running—efficiency and aggressiveness. Johnson posted a clip of his own route-running on Instagram accompanied by this message:
“My young receivers I’m watching ya’ll videos, all the pretty [stuff] is cool, but never forget what you do on the cones and ladders shoulder translate over to the field. Be violent & aggressive w/no wasted movement. #StayWoke #SincerelyTheBestRouteRunner”
Johnson went on to post several clips of his old practice film, which feature some fantastic route-running, all accompanied by the hashtag “#SincerelyTheBestRouteRunner”:
When STACK spoke with Johnson about his route-running skills, he reiterated a similar message. “Being able to stop on a dime, then re-accelerate explosively is what makes defenders look silly,” Johnson said. “I can run the same route over and over and make it look a little different each time. It’s like creating a masterpiece.”
RELATED: The Beautiful Art Form of Chad Johnson’s Route-Running