What is the NFL Combine 40-Yard Dash Record

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What is the NFL Combine 40 record.

What is the NFL Combine 40-Yard Dash Record


It’s one of everyone’s favorite parts of the NFL Combine. Watching the fastest players sprint across the field for the 40-yard dash. Throughout the history of the combine, a lot of buzz goes to speed and who will clock in with the quickest time. What is the NFL Combine 40-yard dash record? Let’s look at some of the best times over the years.

Who Ran the Fastest 40-Yard Dash at the NFL Combine?

Wide receiver John Ross has the fastest official 40 time at the NFL Scouting Combine. In 2017, the wide receiver from Washington ran the dash in 4.22 seconds. Ross was drafted number nine overall in the 2017 NFL Draft.

Last year’s event saw cornerback Kalon Barnes from Baylor make news and headlines as he wowed scouts clocking in at 4.23 seconds. It was the second-fastest time ever. Barnes was drafted in the seventh round of the 2022 NFL Draft after being the top of the class in the 40.

Bo Jackson and the 4.16 40-Yard-Dash

If you ask football fans about players and their 40 times, many will bring up legendary running back Bo Jackson. Stories are still told and mostly embellished about his speed. There are claims he ran the event in 4.16 seconds back in 1986. 

There was no official timing back then, so we will never know. Official electronic timing started in the year 1999. Regardless, some scouts considered Jackson one of the best prospects in NFL history.

Deion Sanders is said to be one of the fastest football players and athletes of all time. He reportedly ran the 40 in 4.2 seconds at the 1989 NFL Combine.

Top 10 Fastest 40 Times in Combine History

Who are the fastest players the combine has seen? These college prospects showed off how fast they were before making their way to the NFL Draft.

Here’s a list of the top 10 fastest 40-yard dash times since electronic timers were introduced in 1999.

  1. John Ross, WR, 4.22 seconds in 2017
  2. Kalon Barnes, CB, 4.23 seconds in 2022
  3. Chris Johnson, RB, 4.24 seconds in 2008
  4. Rondel Melendez, WR, 4.24 seconds in 1999
  5. Dri Archer, RB, 4.26 seconds in 2014
  6. Tariq Woolen, CB, 4.26 seconds in 2022
  7. Jerome Mathis, WR, 4.26 seconds in 2005
  8. Marquise Goodwin, WR, 4.27 seconds in 2013
  9. Stanford Routt, CB, 4.27 seconds in 2005
  10. Henry Ruggs III, WR 4.27 seconds in 2020

Which Positions Run the 40 at the Combine?

All of the positions are welcome to participate in the 40-yard dash. The most pressure seems to fall on wide receivers, cornerbacks, and running backs. These skill positions rely heavily on speed so a bad 40 time might impact what a team thinks of a player.

Best 40-Yard Dash from the 2022 NFL Combine

As we mentioned earlier, Kalon Barnes was the fastest player in 2022. Who else was he in competition with? Three wide receivers cracked the top five to go along with two cornerbacks.

  1. Kalon Barnes, CB, Baylor – 4.23 seconds.
  2. Tarik Woolen, CB, Texas-San Antonio – 4.26 seconds.
  3. Tyquan Thompson, WR, Baylor – 4.28 seconds.
  4. Velus Jones, WR, Tennessee – 4.31 seconds.
  5. Calvin Austin III, WR, Memphis – 4.32 seconds.

How the 40-Yard Dash Works?

The 40-yard dash is a test of speed that measures a player’s ability to sprint 40 yards as fast as possible. At the NFL Combine, the 40-yard dash is run indoors with electronic timing. Players are timed from the moment they start running to the moment they cross the finish line. 

The players begin in a track stance at the starting line. The timer begins after a player’s first movement rather than having a sound start the player. This helps those competing get comfortable and start when ready.

The timing is accurate to the hundredth of a second. The 40-yard dash is an important test for all players, but it’s particularly crucial for players who play positions that require speed, such as running backs, wide receivers, and defensive backs.

Average Times Based on Position

Wide receivers, cornerbacks, and running backs typically are at the top of the list with the fastest times. They average 4.48, 4.48, and 4.49 seconds respectively. Free safety is next on the list with 4.53 seconds.

The slowest average time goes to offensive tackles and guards who clock in with an average of 5.32 and 5.37 seconds. Who will we see top the list in 2023?

What is the NFL Combine 40-Yard Dash Record FAQs

Who ran the fastest 40-yard dash in combine history?

Wide receiver John Ross ran the 40 in 4.22 seconds back in 2017. He went on to be a first-round pick in the 2017 NFL Draft.

Where is the NFL Combine?

It is in the state of Indiana at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis.

Who has the best time for a quarterback at the combine?

Michael Vick sprinted to a pace of 4.33 seconds back in 2001. He ended up being the number one overall pick for the Atlanta Falcons in 2001. Robert Griffin III also clocked in at 4.33.

Which halfback has the fastest time ever?

Chris Johnson’s 4.24 seconds sits at the top of the list for running backs.

Author: Sam Russell

Sam hails from Grandville, Michigan. He has a rich sports background, including playing baseball at Central Michigan before covering high school sports and working with the Orlando Magic. He earned his degree from Central Michigan University and was a member of the 2010 MAC Championship baseball team. Sam grew his knowledge of sports betting while working with Betsperts in various areas such as writing, social media, betting research, and business development. He's a big fan of the NBA, NFL, and MLB, highly interested in data and statistics.