The Rock Lands His First Sports Illustrated Cover

It's been a banner year for Dwayne The Rock Johnson, as not only has he been crowned People's sexiest man alive, but he's also graced the cover of Sports Illustrated for the first time in his career.

The superstar actor announced the big occasion on his Instagram page, and he seemed thrilled to share his story of perseverance through struggles and failure. The caption is included below.

Grateful to share this EXCLUSIVE NEW COVER w/ you. Failure can be a cool & powerful thing.. When I was 15yrs old and started playing football, I had a dream that one day I'd play in the NFL and be on the cover of Sports Illustrated. Keep in mind, at 15, I also considered becoming a pro-boxer 'cause I thought I could be beat Mike Tyson who at that time, became the youngest ever Heavyweight Champ, so clearly my goals were extremely ambitious if not crack pipe level impossible. I failed to make it to the NFL (as well as got cut from the Canadian Football League). But my football failure created a drive that still pushes me today. Now years later THE COVER of @SportsIllustrated dream & goal was just achieved. Holy shit! (that's the 15yr old in me talkin';). At the end of the day, I want to surround myself with the hungriest and most brilliant team, because I never want to just play in the game, I always want change the way the game played. And thank God I didn't fight Mike Tyson. #FromAthleteToCEO #ToTheCoverOfSportsIllustrated #SevenBucksProds #1Baller *LINK TO FULL STORY IN MY BIO

A photo posted by therock (@therock) on

"Grateful to share this EXCLUSIVE NEW COVER w/ you. Failure can be a cool & powerful thing.. When I was 15yrs old and started playing football, I had a dream that one day I'd play in the NFL and be on the cover of Sports Illustrated. Keep in mind, at 15, I also considered becoming a pro-boxer 'cause I thought I could be beat Mike Tyson who at that time, became the youngest ever Heavyweight Champ, so clearly my goals were extremely ambitious if not crack pipe level impossible. I failed to make it to the NFL (as well as got cut from the Canadian Football League). But my football failure created a drive that still pushes me today. Now years later THE COVER of @SportsIllustrated dream & goal was just achieved. Holy shit! (that's the 15yr old in me talkin';). At the end of the day, I want to surround myself with the hungriest and most brilliant team, because I never want to just play in the game, I always want change the way the game played. And thank God I didn't fight Mike Tyson. #FromAthleteToCEO #ToTheCoverOfSportsIllustrated #SevenBucksProds #1Baller"

The issue recalls his early Football days in great detail, showing how his struggle with knee injuries, in particular, led to him seeking a new avenue for this athletic abilities. That next step was the WWE, or as it was called at the time the WWF, but the issue only devotes one single paragraph to that part of his career, a career that far exceeds his Football days.

In that small section, he does talk about how his early wrestling days helped shape him for Hollywood (via Sports Illustrated).

"I've always been a performer," Johnson says. "When I was eight years old, I used to crack up my family by doing Richard Pryor monologues. So the showmanship of wrestling came easy to me. I loved playing the heel because of the intense reaction it generated. That was my No. 1 thing every night: I just wanted to connect with the audience."