Looks like Marquise Goodwin found a new job pretty quickly.
And it’s going incredibly well for him.
It’s been a wild year for Goodwin, who signed a one-year contract with the Eagles, only to opt out of the season because of COVID concerns. When the season ended, his rights reverted back to the 49ers, who released him last week.
Turns out Goodwin had a different sport in mind.
The 30-year-old Goodwin, a one-time track and field superstar, competed in the long jump Saturday for the first time in five years and not only posted an Olympic-qualifying mark, he recorded the No. 4 mark in the world this year.
Competing at the Florida International Pro Addition at the Ansin Sports Complex in Miramar, Fla., Goodwin soared 26 feet, 7 3/4 inches, a mark that only three other athletes in the world have reached this track season.
It was Goodwin’s first track meet since May 14, 2016, when he set a personal-best in the long jump of 27-8 1/2 in the Guadeloupe Invitational in Baie-Mahault, France.
Thanks to that jump five years ago, he's the No. 19 American ever and No. 46 in world history, according to the World Athletics database.
Goodwin didn't leap quite that far Saturday, but considering he's focused on football the last five years, his jump was amazing.
Goodwin fouled on his first two attempts, but hit 26-5 3/4 on his third jump. He then fouled two more times before soaring 26-7 3/4 on his final attempt.
The wind was recorded at 1.2 meters-per-second, safely under the 2.0 meters-per-second that renders a mark wind-aided and negates it from consideration for records and performance lists.
By now you’re probably wondering … how do you post the 4th-best long jump in the world in your first meet in five years?
I guess we know what Goodwin was practicing over the past year when he wasn’t practicing football.
It’s not like Goodwin is a novice at this. He was a two-time NCAA champion in the long jump at Texas, he won the 2011 U.S. long jump title and he placed 10th at the 2012 Olympics in London.
But a five-year layoff is a five-year layoff, and that makes this performance remarkable.
The only American who’s jumped farther so far this year is Steffin McCarter, also an All-America from the University of Texas. He jumped 27-1 in Austin earlier this month.
By hitting the Olympic qualifier of 26-2 3/4, Goodwin guarantees that he’ll make the 2021 U.S. Olympic team if he’s one of the top three finishers in the Olympic Trials in Eugene, Ore., in June.
How realistic are Goodwin's Olympic chances?
It took 27-7 1/2 to make the team in 2016. But if Goodwin can jump 26-7 3/4 in his first meet in half a decade, it seems likely he can get back into the mid-27-foot range, which would give him an honest shot.
Goodwin, the Bills’ 3rd-round pick in 2013, has 140 catches for 2,323 yards and 13 touchdowns in seven seasons with the Bills and 49ers. His best season was 2017, when he had 56-for-962. He fell to 23 catches in 2018 and 12 in 2019 before the 49ers traded him to the Eagles.
He earned $17.6 million in his career, according to Spotrac, nearly $15 million from the 49ers.
But after putting track on the back burner for five years, it looks like football is now on the back burner for Goodwin.
Now we know why.
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