There are no guarantees in the NFL. Especially for a late round draft pick like former UTSA Tight End David Morgan.
But over the weekend, Morgan took a huge step in his professional football career by officially becoming a member of the Minnesota Vikings’ 53-man roster.
“It was obviously the first goal of mine of mine when I first got to Minnesota ,” Morgan told InsideRunnerSports. “I’ve put in a lot of hard work. The coaches saw that in me. So I’m very thankful.”
The process, however, was a little nerve-racking. There isn’t an official announcement or players aren’t told much.
“No one really knows,” said Morgan. “So I really had no idea if I was safe or what was going to happen.”
The way Morgan explains it, players are called from the locker room to visit with the coaching staff and are then released. As a sixth round draft pick under contract, Morgan said he had a feeling he would make the team, however, he wasn’t sure.
“On the last day when they were making cuts, they were grabbing guys in the locker room. No one ever walked up to me and told me to go talk to anybody. So that was the moment when I knew I made it. It was definitely a quiet and awkward time in the locker room. But I was glad to be on the other end of it.”
Morgan is one of four tight ends on the Vikings’ roster. While he does not yet have a defined role on the team, he says he’s willing to do whatever they ask of him.
“We have a lot of different sets,” said Morgan. “All of the tight ends are responsible for doing a lot of different things. So whatever it is they ask, I’m going to do it.”
During the Vikings’ preseason, Morgan caught seven passes for 70 yards, including a 22 yarder. He also was a key run-blocker on several scoring plays.
“The first couple of games you’re getting to see first hand what the NFL experience is like,” said Morgan. “It’s a level above college ball. It’s nothing I didn’t expect but it definitely is a step up in the aspect of competition.”
According to the Marble Falls-native, one of the biggest differences between college and NFL is the size and speed of all of the players.
“I’ve learned a lot. The pace of the game, the speed of the game, the size. The speed is definitely a lot faster,” said Morgan. “And the size of everybody, just in general. Everyone across the board is a lot bigger.”
At UTSA, Morgan set various records while becoming the school’s first-ever All-American in 2015. Roadrunners’ new head coach Frank Wilson never got to coach Morgan. But Wilson knows that Morgan is a role model for what he is trying to build at UTSA.
“David Morgan epitomizes what we look for in our student-athletes,” Wilson said Monday. “He's the prototype and the standard of the players we want here at UTSA. All respect to the job he has done and is doing with the Minnesota Vikings now.”
Despite a very busy schedule that keeps him occupied on a daily basis, Morgan says he was able to follow UTSA’s season-opening win over Alabama State Saturday.
“I like what I saw,” Morgan said of UTSA’s 26-13 win. “They played with a lot of energy. They were flying around on both sides of the ball. I’m excited. They have a good group of players. I’m glad they got the win. But like I said, they’ve got to keep working and keep grinding to have a great season.”
The Vikings open up the 2016 season on the road Sunday vs the Tennessee Titans. We’ll be sure to keep tabs on Morgan to see how he does throughout the season.