- Brandon Banks believes that he is the fastest player on the Redskins' roster. Fellow receiver Anthony Armstrong says otherwise. (Photo: Jay Westcott)
The John Thompson Show on ESPN 980 created a buzz yesterday when co-host Doc Walker had Redskins receivers Brandon Banks and Anthony Armstrong on yesterday, and the two started debating who was faster.
Banks, a rookie out of Kansas State, has dazzled fans this season with his speed and has returned a kick off for a touchdown three times during the regular season, although two of them have been called back on penalties that were committed away from the ball.
Armstrong also is in his first season with the Redskins and has emerged as the team’s top deep threat and is one of the NFL's leaders in yards per catch with 21.8 yards a reception.
Banks and Armstrong have debated it since the offseason, but Walker made the discussion public.
Today in the locker room, Banks and Armstrong both stood by their claims that they are faster than the other.
Said Banks: “What do y’all think? I’m a WHOLE lot faster than Anthony.”
Banks claims -- and appears to have 4.23-second 40-yard-dash speed -- but at the NFL combine clocked a 4.4. He has an explanation, however.
“I pulled my hamstring,” Banks said. “I mean, I don’t want to make no excuses. I still ran a 4.4 with a pulled hamstring. Of course, I’m a 4.2 guy.”
Armstrong has said the 5-foot-7 Banks is quicker, but he is faster, and says his longer strides are one of the keys to his success. When told this, Banks replied: “It don’t matter what he say. Any race, any place, I’m faster.”
Word got back to Armstrong about Banks’ latest stance, and the 6-foot wideout at first tried to dance around the talk.
“Well, this ain’t the time or the place. It’s too cold. And we’re in the middle of the season. … I’m worried about new York right now,” Armstrong said.
But then he couldn’t help himself.
“I can get him. I can get him in the 40, and it’ll probably be by a nose. And I’ll get him in the 100, too.”
Asked about his confidence, Armstrong said: “Yeah, I’m confident in the 40-yard dash, why wouldn’t I? I’m a 4.2 guy. I didn’t get to go to the combine, so I can’t report. But I know what I ran back in the day. So, I’m sure I can do it again.”
Armstrong said he imagines that that he and Banks will race in the offseason, but he couldn’t say when.
“It might be like Mayweather-Pacquiao: the fight that never happens,” Armstrong said. “Y’all pick Team Armstrong and Team Banks. I’m not saying he’s gotta get tested or nothing, I’ll just race.”
When asked who he’d pick in a race, Redskins coach Mike Shanahan said, “I really don’t know. They’re both pretty fast. It’d be pretty close. They’re both in the 4.4, 4.3 area. Both guys are in pretty good shape. Either guy can run.”