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Undeterred, he applied for the show in Nicaragua.

“Even though I’m getting up there in years, I said, `I’m going to give it one more shot,’” he said.

This time Johnson made the cut. He was part of a team of 10 contestants over the age of 40 competing against a group 30 and under.

Johnson returned several weeks ago to the Keys _ or “heaven,” as he called it. He’s now preparing for another NFL season as a commentator for Fox.

“There was absolutely no contact with the outside world in Nicaragua,” he said. “I’m catching up on the NFL now. I had to reintroduce myself to my wife when I came back. I found out who won the NBA championship, and I found out some college teams moved to a different conference.”

Johnson’s also catching up at the dinner table. He won’t say how much weight he lost on the “Survivor” diet, but with a laugh he said, “I’ve gained about half of it back.”