Adidas Offered A Sneaker Contract To The Player Who Ran The Fastest 40-Yard Dash At The 2013 NFL Combine
The NFL combine has turned into a pretty big deal in recent years. Although casual NFL fans may not be interested in watching a bunch of college kids running wind sprints and knocking into tackling dummies, there are a number of hardcore fans who watch the annual event religiously. The NFL Network devotes a large chunk of time to covering the NFL Combine and showcasing the stars of the future, and the times that are posted in the 40-yard dash every year are routinely the most popular aspect of what goes on during the combine. Speed isn’t the only thing that makes an NFL player great. But, in certain situations, a good 40-yard dash time has made a big impact in a player’s draft stock. And, the players themselves enjoy trying to be the fastest, so fans have taken a liking to following 40 times as well.
This year, the 40-yard dash took on a whole new meaning, though. Outside of bragging rights, adidas raised the stakes by announcing that they were going to be offering a sneaker contract to whichever NFL prospect finished with the fastest 40-yard dash time. In most cases, that player is a guy who wouldn’t otherwise receive a sneaker deal, so it was a great publicity stunt for adidas to pull during the NFL Combine.
So, who ended up being named the fastest player? That distinction belongs to University of Texas wide receiver Marquise Goodwin this year. He was the only prospect to post a time below 4.3 seconds at 4.27 seconds and he came thisclose to breaking Tennessee Titans running back Chris Johnson‘s 40-yard dash record time of 4.24 seconds back at the 2008 NFL Combine. Rounding out the list of the top runners were Auburn running back Onterio McCalebb, West Virginia wide receiver Tavon Austin, and Texas A&M wide receiver Ryan Swope, who all posted a second-place time of 4.34 seconds.
So, will Goodwin take adidas up on their offer and ink a sneaker deal with them? We’ll just have to wait and see. But, either way, it was a good idea for adidas to make the offer. They got a ton of free press out of it and maybe, just maybe, a commitment from a future NFL star.