Back in his day, Chad Johnson was one of the best wide receivers in the game. But as the Bengals went downhill, so did his career. While he did move on to another team, the New England Patriots, things didn’t quite work out.
Miami signed him the following year but let him go before the season started.
He tried his hand at the Canadian game for a little bit, but he last caught passes for the Monterrey Fundidores of the Liga de Fútbol Americano Profesional de México in 2017. Now it looks like he might be making a pro football comeback—in the XFL.
How it came about is somewhat of a mystery. But it appears that Johnson is going to get a workout with the XFL—as a kicker.
It sounds kind of crazy, but Johnson did kick an extra point for the Bengals during the preseason once.
In a video he posted to Instagram in December, he hits one from deep:
Like every player in the XFL, he hopes to make it into the NFL (it certainly isn’t for the money)—yes, as a kicker. But he also seems to be keeping the whole idea in perspective.
He had this to say about the opportunity on Twitter Tuesday morning :
Pretty far fetched but imagine me being consistent during an XFL season & getting a chance at a 53 man roster in the NFL, even i don’t make it just being able to compete for a spot at a entirely different position will be so riveting.
Good luck, Chad. Anything can happen. Heck – Bill Belichick went to all sorts of lengths trying to find a kicker this season.
That is not to say that Antonio Brown should try to become a kicker in the XFL, but maybe he should give the new league some serious consideration. He has been negative about the XFL in the past. But with his star power and assuming he can behave, they would likely welcome him with open arms.
Fledgling leagues like the XFL are dependent on star power to survive. Despite his antics over the last year, Brown still holds a degree of star power. Fans would tune in to watch him. Now, half will be hoping to see him implode on live TV. But they will all be watching to see if he can still play.
If he can and can also behave for the duration of the season, maybe the NFL lets him back in. After all, the NFL cares first and foremost about production. If he proves he can still produce, someone will be interested in him.