By: Hans Themistode
For roughly 11 years, Chad Johnson caught NFL passes, blocked oncoming rushers and pranced his way into the end zone before retiring in 2011. Now, he’ll get his chance to return to the spotlight. This time, however, in an entirely new sport.
The former NFL wide receiver will officially make his boxing debut on the undercard of Floyd Mayweather vs Logan Paul on June 6th, at the Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens, Florida in reportedly a four or six round exhibition bout.
According to Johnson, Leonard Ellerbe, CEO of Mayweather Promotions, reached out to him with the idea. And although it came as a shock at first, the former NFL Pro Bowler simply couldn’t say no.
“So Leonard Ellerbe, Floyd manager, hit me up like hey I got an opportunity for you,” said Johnson during the I AM ATHLETE Podcast. “Floyd is fighting June 6th, at the Hard Rock, you can make a cool million and do a few rounds. It’s something I really couldn’t pass up. I could pass it up but why not? Everything in life I’m good at, besides golf. I called Ellerbe back and said let’s do this.”
Johnson, 43, has been known to train with Mayweather and former four-division champion Adrien Broner over the years but has never stepped inside the ring in a professional setting. At the moment, Johnson is still unaware with whom exactly he’ll be facing but reportedly, a slew of celebrities and fellow athletes are being considered.
If, however, for some reason, Johnson finds himself standing across the ring from an actual professional boxer, he claims that he is unafraid. The self-appointed “Sweet Feet Johnson” will simply take care of business regardless of who he’s lined up against.
“It don’t matter who I’m facing. When I played on Sundays, even though it’s a different sport, you knew you were going to get your money’s worth. June 6th, Sweet feet Johnson is going to go in there and do what I do best.”
With Johnson officially joining the event, he’ll join an undercard that is already filled with legitimate boxing matches. In the co-main event, former multiple division champion Badou Jack and WBA “Regular” light heavyweight titlist Jean Pascal will face off for the second time in their careers. Their first contest took place in December of 2019 with Pascal taking home a somewhat controversial split decision after the pair traded knockdowns. Also featured on the card, former unified super welterweight champion Jarrett Hurd will make his middleweight debut against fringe contender Luis Arias.
In the main event slot, of course, Mayweather will look to continue his winning ways in an exhibition match against YouTuber turned professional boxer, Logan Paul.