In CrossFit, Goal Setting, HD Videos

November 27, 2012

Video Article

Pittsburgh Steelers starting fullback Will Johnson almost didn’t make the NFL.

The West Virginia University graduate missed a post-college shot at the league because of the 2011 lockout. Determined, he started training with Andy Hendel at CrossFit Charlotte in North Carolina after moving to the state with his fiancee.

Johnson stayed motivated by printing out the National Athletic Combine stats of the NFL’s top athletes and pasting them on his bathroom door.

“So every morning I went to the bathroom door I could see those numbers and knew why I was gettin’ up, going to CrossFit in the morning, why I was goin’ to the field by myself,” he explains.

When Johnson signed with the Steelers, he was ecstatic.

“You wanna cry, you wanna yell,” he explains.

Johnson’s fiancee says he might not have the best genes, but he does have the best work ethic.

“Just knowing the behind the scenes of what goes on, seeing him on the field, that touchdown isn’t just a touchdown to me,” she says. “It’s something bigger than that.”

As of publication date, the fullback has played 11 games for the Steelers and has 9 receptions for 77 yards and a touchdown. The Steelers are currently second in the AFC North.

7min 20sec

HD file size: 267 MB
SD wmv file size: 88 MB
SD mov file size: 44 MB

Please note: For smoother viewing of HD videos, please download the entire file to your hard drive before watching it (right-click and choose Save Link As...).

Additional reading: CrossFitter Signs With Steelers by Andréa Maria Cecil, published April 27, 2012.

Free Download


19 Comments on “Pittsburgh Steeler and CrossFitter Will Johnson”


wrote …

Great video. Very well done.


wrote …

Wow! Very inspirational!


wrote …

Awesome video! It's been fun watching you play this year. Hope you are a Steeler for a long time. If you ever need a place to do power cleans in the off-season, come out to my garage in Moon Township, haha!

Go Steelers!!!


wrote …

Congratulations, Will Johnson! You are living your dream.
Be Safe and Godspeed!
George Ryan


wrote …

What a truly inspirational story! This is why I love CrossFit! Thank you HQ


wrote …

Absolutely awesome! The Patriots will always be my team, but I'm now a fan of this guy. I hope he has a long, successful career.


Jim Lanier wrote …

Good for you Will!! You've got another new fan. Stay strong. Love the work ethic!


wrote …

Great work!


wrote …

very motivating... congrats and best wishes Will. It's the struggle that's remembered more than the outcome. Destiny is only a result of the other 4 Ds.. Desire, Direction, Dedication, and Discipline.. with all those.. the fifth and final D... Destiny will come.
Good luck and enjoy your jouney.


wrote …



wrote …

Wow. Whether it's a professional athlete, a mom, or a cancer survivor the passion and work ethic in these stories is always the same. Thank you for another extremely good video and motivation for sure!

Congrats on that TD Will!

Miranda O.


wrote …

When Will walked in to Crossfit Charlotte he was just another new Crossfitter with some collegiate athletics to his credit.

I will never forget the first time i saw him push the prowler as part of the WOD. He covered 200m of ground before the rest of us even got halfway. He was remarkably strong compared to the rest of us, but he still had to learn to climb a rope, kip on the pull-up bar and get the most out of his pull on the rower. He took instruction with humility & applied Coach Hendel's cues with dedication.

He gave the ribbing as well as he took it and in a very short amount of time he became part of the CFC family.

I think in his quiet & contrite spirit we all saw greatness in him and I think I speak for all that knew him at Crossfit Charlotte when I say we are proud of you Will and look forward to future with promise! Your best days are ahead of you!

Oh and that Jess, you better hurry up and marry her! She's a keeper!


wrote …

As a life-long (suffering) Browns fan and a dedicated CrossFitter, I'm truly conflicted! On one hand, I'm happy to see such a humble, hard-working young man turn his dreams into realized goals. On the other hand, I can't stand seeing the Steelers continually succeed. Therefore, I wish Will all good things for 14 out of the 16 games Pittsburgh plays each year. He truly sheds a good light on the benefits of CrossFit.


wrote …

To see his speed and power and think he had to scratch and crawl to make it onto an NFL team makes me appreciate how crazy athletic and fast these professional football players are. Very motivating video. What a great guy to root for!


wrote …

From one WVU alum to another KEEP IT UP WILL! I'll be rooting for you.


wrote …

Hard work always pays off!!!


wrote …

gonna put you on my fantasy football team next year!


wrote …

I second Jim Lanier's comment, you have a new fan my man. Incredibly inspirational to see someone working so hard to achieve their goals and excited to see crossfit as a tool for that success, sweet!


wrote …

Awesome video indeed. Great to see such drive and hunger alive in any able and willing body. Beautiful stuff.

Would be interested to see what kind of programming Andy had him on? Typical class sessions or sports specific work?

Leave a comment

Comments (You may use HTML tags for style)