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Tyrann Mathieu says he could cover Calvin Johnson

Tyrann Mathieu surprised many scouts with his speed and footwork at the NFL Scouting Combine Tuesday and quieted questions about how he could perform on a football field.

While off-the-field questions are a concern, Mathieu does not lack in the confidence arena. During drills, the 5-foot-9 cornerback formerly known as "Honey Badger" told NFL Network's Deion Sanders -- or was it Leon Sandcastle? -- he believes he could stick with Megatron.

"I feel like if I was to check somebody like a Calvin Johnson, he'll make his plays, but I'm definitely going to get mine, too," Mathieu said. "He's going to catch his five balls, but I'm going to get my two turnovers, so we'll be even."

That is a lot of bravado from a man who hasn't played organized football in more than a year. (No word on if Mathieu forgot that the 6-foot-5 Johnson broke Jerry Rice's single season receiving yards record.)

The best corners generally are the cockiest, so while it seems slightly ridiculous to picture Mathieu slowing down Megatron, personnel people should love to hear the confidence.

Most scouts see Mathieu being drafted around the third round as a kick returner and slot corner. With Johnson playing more in the slot last season, and presumably future seasons, depending on where he lands, there is a chance the cornerback could get a chance to prove his outsized comments.


Mathieu tweeted his admiration for Megatron on Wednesday morning, saying his comments were driven by competition.

Follow Kevin Patra on Twitter @kpatra.

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