A former NFL superstar just took part in the full NASCAR experience. Chad Johnson, the Cincinnati Bengals’ all-time leader in receiving yards with 10,783, spent time with two of the biggest names in motorsports. He also provided a first-person look at some iconic stock cars.
Johnson first piqued interest late Tuesday by posting a photo of himself trackside at Charlotte Motor Speedway. He posed next to Dale Earnhardt Jr. while wearing a baggy fire suit and leaning on a JR Motorsports Xfinity Series stock car. Johnson did not provide any context to explain the photo, but he revealed that hitting a speed of 190 mph coming off of the bank “is unexplainable.”
There were several other photos and videos on Johnson’s Instagram Stories that detailed his time with NASCAR’s elite. He posed next to Toni Breidinger, the first Arab-American female driver, then watched a pit stop test by Rev Racing, the competitive arm of NASCAR’s Drive for Diversity program.
Johnson teased an upcoming video filmed at Kyle Busch Motorsports
While the photos featuring Earnhardt and Breidinger both created questions about future projects, Johnson added even more intrigue with a series of videos. He walked around the lobby of Kyle Busch Motorsports and showcased several racing vehicles from NASCAR history, including multiple that Busch drove to Victory Lane.
It was during this series of Instagram videos that an unseen figure asked Johnson if he had his outfit. The two-time All-Pro panned the camera to show three chairs and a couch arranged in front of video cameras. “Yeah. This is all I brought for today,” Johnson responded. He then posted a photo of him and Busch.
The former Bengals star was not the only person teasing projects on social media. “Coach” Phil Horton, the pit crew coach for the Drive for Diversity Crew Member Development Program, posted a collage of images on his Instagram feed. The photos featured the “I AM ATHLETE” podcast crew — Johnson, Brandon Marshall, Channing Crowder, Fred Taylor, and Chef Nancie — alongside a message about them coming to visit the pit crew.
‘I AM ATHLETE’ and NASCAR have crossed paths before
The social media teasers featuring Johnson were not the first instances of the ‘I AM ATHLETE’ crew dabbling in the NASCAR world. Marshall actually appeared on the latest episode of “The Dale Jr. Download.” He sat down with the NASCAR legend to discuss his NFL career and how he doesn’t necessarily miss football. Marshall said that he just misses the competitiveness.
Additionally, 23XI Racing driver Bubba Wallace made an appearance on ‘I AM ATHLETE‘ in early March to discuss his childhood in lower Alabama and his journey to becoming one of NASCAR’s most famous drivers. Wallace explained during this interview that he would have an easier time moving from a stock car to the NFL than Crowder would have moving from linebacker to professional racing.
The long discussion featuring Wallace and the ‘I AM ATHLETE’ crew also covered one of Johnson’s favorite topics — McDonald’s. The hosts asked Wallace if he eats a strict diet, but he responded by proclaiming that he eats McDonald’s “every day.” Johnson, a longtime supporter of the Golden Arches, stood up and celebrated while shaking the NASCAR driver’s hand.
With his time in Charlotte complete, Johnson hopped on a plane and headed to Jacksonville. He said that his next pursuit will be taking in a UFC press conference. Busch, on the other hand, will prepare for the Geico 500 at Talladega Superspeedway. The driver of the No. 18 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota Camry is currently 11th in the points, but he could make a serious move with a strong performance on Sunday.