I’m not one for the super fluffy articles about competitive fire or the heart of a champion or the 1% daily improvement. It’s not that I don’t believe those things are important—the Falcons certainly do, and I’m on board with any modest benefit that may bring—but that I think there are usually more concrete things to write about.
That said, Takkarist McKinley is an unusual rookie in many ways, one who has been inarguably the most enjoyable Falcon to follow on social media since Roddy White. He was drafted less for that than his physical ability and speed, and his culture fit. That last part clicked into place tonight, thanks to this tweet.
Horrible practice today on my end.. need better get off, better pad level, better hands, and better conditioning. MUST GET BETTER— Takkarist McKinley (@Takk) August 4, 2017
For a rookie who has an uncertain year one impact, Takk’s attitude is deeply encouraging. Pass rushers fresh out of college are used to winning with their athleticism and brute strength, oftentimes, and the NFL offers a rude awakening. The sooner a player realizes they need to make real changes to start wreaking havoc, the better. McKinley is getting there fast, and self-diagnosing the weaknesses in his game.
I think this kid might wind up being pretty special.