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Antonio Cromartie calls out critics, flashes 40 speed

In the Nicholas Dawidoff book Collision Low Crossers, which chronicled the New York Jets' turbulent 2011 season, Jets coaches would marvel at the natural athleticism of Antonio Cromartie, who could run and change directions like a gazelle despite his lanky 6-foot-2, 210-pound frame.

The same staff was also driven crazy by the inconsistencies in Cromartie's play, despite his obvious physical gifts. This might explain how Cromartie came to sign with the Arizona Cardinals this offseason after Gang Green showed little interest in retaining the 30-year-old cornerback in free agency.

You can imagine this snub serves as significant motivation for Cromartie, who put his uncommon athleticism on display via Instagram on Friday.

The accompanying caption reads: "And (people) say I've lost a step. Only thing I can do laugh at you all. Ran 4.34 and 4.36 in the 40 today after a workout and I'm only getting faster."

For comparative purposes, the fastest cornerback time in the 40 at the 2014 NFL Combine came from Justin Gilbert, who ran a 4.37. If Cromartie's 4.34 time was official -- and, just to be clear, it is not -- he would've tied for the third-fastest time of any Combine player in Indianapolis.

But let's not quibble over tenths of a second. Cromartie remains an extremely nimble NFL player, with much to prove. Come the regular season, that speed might leave the Jets feeling the sharp pang of regret.

The latest "Around The League Podcast" ranks the league's top tight ends and debates Andrew Luck vs. Cam Newton.

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