Kansas City Chiefs WR Tyreek Hill has some new doubters to silence. Ahead of Super Bowl LIV, Hill revealed his intentions to possibly try and qualify for the Olympics. Growing up he competed in Track & Field on the 100-meter, 200-meter, long jump and relay teams.
“Hopefully after this season, if I’m healthy and my mind is still in the right place, I really want to try to qualify for some Olympic teams,” Hill said ahead of Super Bowl LIV. “Even go to Penn Relays, give that a try. Maybe get a few guys off the [Chiefs] and see if we can put a relay together and show these track guys that, ‘Hey, football guys, hey, we used to do this back in high school, man. We still got it.’ So maybe, I just want to have fun with it.”
Hill’s 200-meter time was so fast in high school that he would have not only qualified for the 2012 Olympics but it would have placed sixth in the final race.
Now, that Hill has made his intentions known, some of the most successful sprinters in history have come out of the woodwork to share their opinions on whether Hill could possibly qualify for future Olympic races.
“No, there’s no chance,” Eight-time gold medalist Usain Bolt told NBC Sports’ Seth Rubinroit. “A lot of people think it’s about one-off runs, but it’s rounds that really show who you are and the amount of work you do. So I think no, he wouldn’t make the team.”
Hill does face some challenges in qualifying for the Olympics, specifically, his NFL play weight is much different than it was when he posted his Olympic qualifying times.
“The thing is, like, I’m weighing like 195 right now,” Hill explained. “Back in high school when I ran a 9.9 [100-meter], I was like 175. Like, if I do it, it would be me changing my whole diet, and everything I’ve been doing to get to this point where I’m at now.”
Bolt wasn’t the only Olympian that doubted Hill’s ability to qualify.
“No,” four-time Olympic gold medalist Michael Johnson told the Star-Telegram’s Max Faulkner. “With all due respect to Tyreek Hill, he’s a fantastic football player … but you can write the expression on my face.”
Faulkner said that Johnson looked amused and annoyed by the notion that a football player could possibly compete in the Olympics. Perhaps an Olympic athlete is a little biased when it comes to the belief that an athlete in a sport, perhaps considered inferior, could possibly qualify for the Olympics?
“He knows what his sport is,” Johnson continued. “That sort of thing picks up steam from other people saying, ‘Oh, he can be in the Olympics.’”