Those of you who follow Dante Pettis on Twitter will have found he has desire to train with one of the NFL’s better wide receivers who is now retired—and we’re not talking about Jerry Rice.
Chad Johnson AKA Ochocinco retweeted a request from the San Francisco 49ers wide receiver that, well, is interesting:
Let’s go, recover for now and enjoy the offseason, end of February & March it’s all gas no breaks https://t.co/D7En6mnR2N— Chad Johnson (@ochocinco) January 19, 2019
Chad Johnson was a very good wide receiver on the field. He also came with character issues that could best be described as “Terrell Owens-light.” I’m sure everyone remembers the “Future HOFer” jacket incident and that’s just the tip of the iceberg. As far as route running however, there were few that could cover Johnson when he was with the Cincinnati Bengals. He even made a list of “Who covered 85, in ‘05.” for the 2005 season. It was almost a circus.
It was a domestic violence incident in 2012 that set into motion his departure from the NFL. He turned to the CFL for a brief stint and also found himself for one game in Mexico’s LFA. As far as any sort of mentor or coaching role, it’s limited to a one activity in 2016 when he came to the Cleveland Browns training camp to work with the wide receivers as a guest instructor.
There’s a lot that Pettis could learn from Johnson, but there’s always the bigger question: why isn’t he consulting with the GOAT? Jerry Rice has been vocal and open about working with the younger wide receivers, and he also showed up to training camp in 2017 to work with the 49ers.
At the same time, there’s a lot Johnson could teach Pettis. Both had similar rookie seasons and I could see a similar playing style develop from Pettis. Maybe Johnson is just the first player Pettis hits up? Maybe he goes like a kung-fu fighter to all the great wide receivers to train, like Terrell Owens, Jerry Rice, Randy Moss, etc. to learn everything he can?
The fact he’s trying to train with these guys says a lot about Pettis in any case. Remember when people thought he wouldn’t be focused enough on football?