INDIANAPOLIS -- Cheetahs never prosper.
Earlier this month, Adidas announced it would award the three fastest participants at the scouting combine with custom-made Porsche-911 that had cheetahs -- which every school kid knows is the world's fastest mammal -- emblazoned on the back end. If you're able to stomach the commercialization of an event as ordinary as men running a 40-yard dash, you had to admit that it was a pretty cool idea and the cars were a pretty sweet ride.
Alas, the cheetahs are no more. The idea apparently ran afoul of the NFL's existing partnership with GM. (Painting a cheetah on a Lincoln just doesn’t have the same flair). Now the cheetah-Porsches will probably be bought by some Silicon Valley 25-year-old or a plastic surgeon in South Florida who thinks he's 25.
Adidas instead will award the three fastest players here in Indy with $100,000. That's what Stockton's Brandin Cooks won last year when he ran a 4.33-second 40-yard dash. That time actually was second-fastest. Kent State running back Dri Archer ran a 4.26 40-yard dash. Archer, however, wasn't wearing Adidas.
The wide receivers and running backs will run the 40-yard dash Saturday. The defensive backs go on Monday. San Francisco general manager Trent Balke said earlier this week he is looking for players who can get down field in a hurry.
Read Matt Barrows’ blogs and archives at www.sacbee.com/sf49ers.