Maybe Robert Griffin III hasn’t quite closed the door on his track and field career.
The Washington Redskins quarterback still harbors Olympic dreams. He was once a strong 400m hurdler, posting a personal best of 49.22 seconds, the 29th-fastest man in the world in 2008.
“My dream is to be in the Olympics and represent the United States of America,” Griffin said of his athletic upbringing in a YouTube video published Friday. “So, I was preparing for my dream.
“He’d have me watch (four-time Olympic champion) Michael Johnson run,” Griffin said of his youth track coach. “He’d have me watch (1996 Olympic 110m hurdles champion) Allen Johnson hurdle. And then I would go out and I’d run like Michael Johnson and I would run like Allen Johnson.”
Griffin finished 11th in the 400m hurdles at the 2008 U.S. Olympic trials, taking fifth place in his semifinal heat where the top four made the eight-man final. The top three from the final made the Olympic team.
Griffin, 23, doesn’t have to rush it based on recent Olympic results. Angelo Taylor made the 2012 U.S. Olympic team in the 400m hurdles at age 33. The 2012 Olympic champion in the event, Felix Sanchez of the Dominican Republic, is 36.
Griffin is keeping his options open.
“I would definitely want to still fulfill my dream of still going to the Olympics,” Griffin said. “‘So, some way, somehow. Maybe it’s track. Maybe it’s badminton. Maybe it’s ping pong. I’ll find a way to get to the Olympics.”
Lolo Jones is aware of Griffin’s hurdles history, too.
Olympic hurdler breaks egg-and-spoon run world record
Amy Purdy made her name as a snowboardcross bronze medalist at the Sochi Paralympics and runner-up on “Dancing with the Stars” in 2014.
In September, she’ll combine both.
Purdy will perform as a dancer in the Rio Paralympic Opening Ceremony on Sept. 7, in addition to being an NBC reporter during the Games.
She was told her performance will be four to five minutes. On “Dancing with the Stars,” her performances were about 90 seconds, she said. She traveled to Rio for a week of rehearsals in July.
Purdy, 36, survived bacterial meningitis in 1999 but lost both her legs and later needed a kidney from her father at age 20.
“I’m most excited about the concept of this dance,” Purdy said. “Just the idea of man versus machine. A lot of times we feel really limited because of our prosthetics. But this dance, hopefully, will kind of shatter those borders a little bit and allow me to move my body in a way I haven’t done before.”
Purdy is an innovator. She built her own snowboard and is seen as instrumental in getting her sport into the Paralympic program beginning in 2014.
A model, she’s been in a Madonna music video, a Super Bowl commercial, ESPN the Magazine’s Body Issue and competed on “The Amazing Race” in 2012.
MORE: Rio Paralympic broadcast schedule
Lindsey Vonn‘s episode of “Running Wild with Bear Grylls” will air on NBC on Monday at 10 p.m. ET.
From NBC Universal:
“After roaring across crystal-clear waters in a speedboat, Bear and Lindsey must strip down and swim to shore before inching their way along the rugged coastline. After rappelling down a sheer rock wall, the two get inventive and use a spear-gun to traverse a hundred-foot deep chasm. With the sun setting, they collect a dinner of sea urchins and Bear challenges Lindsey to a swimming competition with hilarious results. Along the way Lindsey shares her journey of love, Olympic glory, and displays the focus and determination that has made her one of the most successful female athletes of all time.”
Vonn is returning from a Feb. 27 crash that left her with three significant left knee fractures.
With 76 career World Cup wins, she is 10 shy of the record held by Swedish legend Ingemar Stenmark.
MORE: Lindsey Vonn wants to race men, retire in 2019