Before They Were Pros: RB Jerick McKinnon

Jerick McKinnon planned to shock people with his speed and impress with his strength at the NFL Scouting Combine. It worked, but he admitted even back then that he had areas of his game to improve.

On Georgia Southern beating Florida
“As an FCS team, you know you’re going to have one elite team on your schedule. They had some injuries, and so did we, but we knew we had a chance to compete against them. We went in there and they had never seen our type of offense. We just took advantage of the opportunity and were fortunate enough to come out on top.”

On his NFL Scouting Combine expectations …
“I’m going to do all the drills, compete and hopefully put up some good numbers. I’m really banking on (his workout day) to put up some big numbers in the bench press.”

On his speed …
“I know some people have me running slow, and I’m not going to throw a number out there, but just watch. It’ll be a good time. I think I may shock some people.”

On pass protection …
“I haven’t done much pass protection, and I need to get coached up on all the techniques, but it’s something I’m willing to do. I think
I showed I can put a hat in there and compete, but as far as technique, that’s where I can improve the most.”

On his strengths, like vision and speed …
“I love to make plays. I can make defenders miss and feel like I have good balance and patience. Pressing to the line, I can make a cut and get north-south real quick.”

On two Georgia Southern players at the Combine following J.J. Wilcox last year …
“We’re transitioning to the Sun Belt and this helps us get bigger on the national stage. That really got a lot of people into Georgia Southern. More scouts are looking at the school now.”

On playing quarterback and transitioning to the NFL …
“They were really helpful in picking up coverages and blitzes. I’ve got to give them credit, and I think it helps me to understand what
everybody else does. When you have a guy who understands what’s going it, it’ll help make it an easy transition.”

Tim Yotter is the publisher of Viking Update. Follow Viking Update on Twitter and discuss this story on our subscriber message board.

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