The Fastest 40 Yard Dash Ever

What Research Found Out On This Very Important Topic
By: Chad Wilson   @Gridironstuds

Please follow me on Twitter @Gridironstuds

Football fans across America continue to obsess over the most simple drill in the game of football. Is there anything more discussed than the 40 yard dash? Every Spring, this drill takes center stage and undoubtedly the question is asked 1,o00’s of times. What’s the fastest 40 yard dash?

Just as sure as you get the question asked 1,000 times, you will get dozens of ridiculous answers. For starters, let’s find out why the 40 yard dash? When and why did 40 yards become so significant? It started in the 1960’s with the NFL team that had the most developed and comprehensive scouting department and that was the Dallas Cowboys. Prior to this time period, NFL coaches chose the 50 yard dash as the mark of measure to determine a player speed worthiness. In 1960, Gil Brandt, the director scouting for the Cowboys along with his department came up with the 40/20/10 measurement. The 40 was used for all players. The 20 yard split time of the 40 was of great significance for linemen since the thought was that they rarely run 40 yards in a game. The 10 yard split was important for wide receivers as a measure of their burst off of the line of scrimmage. With this, a drill was born and almost 50 years later, it has become the center piece of info on a prospective high school, college or professional football player.

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Top Defensive Back 40 Yard Dash Times at 2011 NFL Combine

The defensive backs matched up well in terms of 40 times at this year’s NFL combine in contrast to year’s past where it looked like the wide receivers were just the better athletes.

Miami’s DeMarcus Van Dyke (pictured right) put himself on this illustrious list: when he clocked an amazing 4.28.   It was the fastest 40 yard dash time in the combine this year and one of the fastest times ever in Indianapolis.  Van Dyke’s run will send teams scurrying back to the video tape to take another look at his career at Miami.   Van Dyke is helped by the success of former Miami teammate Sam Shields playing for the World Champion Green Bay Packers.

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