Vikings Wide Receiver Laquon Treadwell
Vikings General Manager Rick Spielman: We're excited to get Mr. Treadwell in this morning. He flew in from Chicago, as everybody knows he is from the Chicago area. As soon as he got in, he got the opportunity to go down to Buffalo Wild Wings to meet our fans on the 'PA' show down there. Since then, he's came up here, he's met with myself for a little bit, he's met with our coaches and got a chance to get a little food in him as he hasn't eaten all day, and then do this press conference. Speaking about last night, again he is the type of Minnesota Viking football player we're trying to bring in here. He checked all of our boxes as we went through it. I'll have Coach Zimmer come up here in a second and talk about what he's going to do for our football team. But he's definitely someone that not only fit the best player available on our board, but also fit the bill as a top need for us as well.
Vikings Head Coach Mike Zimmer: Myself and the rest of the coaches, I know Coach Stewart and Coach Turner, we're all really excited to get the opportunity to get Laquon here. Like Rick [Spielman] said, he's a guy that really fits what we're trying to do here as a football team. He's tough, physical, he's smart and a good competitor. He's the kind of guy that we want to have in the locker room. He comes out and works real hard. After I saw his interview last night, I didn't know that he was with Deion Sanders in his camp, but I texted Deion this morning and asked him about him. He said he's a great kid, he's a heck of a player. We're really, really excited to have him.
Vikings Wide Receiver Laquon Treadwell: First and foremost, I would like to thank the Wilf family, Rick Spielman our GM, and our Head Coach, Coach Zimmer, for just believing in me and trusting in me and giving me a chance to be a part of this great organization. I'm just honored to be here today, and thankful. I'm just going to make the most of my opportunity.
Q: What's it been like just getting into town here and getting to see the fans a little bit and see the facility a little bit more?
A: It's been great. It's everything and more. The fans are very passionate; I can tell from the Buffalo Wild Wings visit and signing things on the way to the bus. They're very passionate and they love their team. The coaches are great. I got a chance to meet Teddy Bridgewater. He's a great guy, great personality. I could see us getting along well. Just looking forward to the future and getting better as a player and helping the team out.
Q: What do you think the biggest adjustment will be coming from the SEC to the NFL?
A: Just learning the playbook and adjusting to the new route combinations, and getting comfortable with everything that has to come with the NFL. That's about it.
Q: What did you and Teddy talk about when you met?
A: The last thing I asked him was what was his goal for the team, and he told me Super Bowl. We just talked about ball, and everything else, just trying to get to feel each other out, getting to know each other and seeing our similarities. He's a cool guy.
Q: Did you follow the Chicago Bears growing up, and were you a Bears fan? And by extension did you follow the Vikings?
A: Growing up I followed the Bears but I wasn't a Bears fan. I liked certain players on the team, and that's with any sport for me. I like certain players on certain teams, and I like to follow the superstars of the teams, and see what they do really well. I wasn't a Bears fan, wasn't a Vikings fan, but now I'm a Viking at heart. I'm here.
Q: What was it like working with Cris Carter? What has he taught you?
A: It was great. I actually enjoyed it. He has so much knowledge on the game that I didn't know was even possible, the things he was teaching me, from stretching your hands to separation. I'm just looking forward to working with him in the future and continuing to build our relationship.
Q: How did you get connected with him?
A: Through my agency. He's under the same agency, or was. He just reached out to me and said he's here for me, and he's looking to help me achieve my goals and my dreams, and help me be the best football player I can be.
Q: How much time did you spend with him?
A: A couple of weeks. I worked out with him probably four times in between combine training and pro training. The times I could get to him and the times he was in town. We've just been talking since I was in college, just about knowledge and wisdom and giving me heads up on certain things.
Q: What's the best piece of advice he gave to you?
A: Never be late.
Q: Not many players can suffer the devastating injury that you did after Auburn, and not only come back but to be a first round pick. What did you learn about yourself in that whole process other than that you had to do the mental as well as the physical?
A: Just my love for the game honestly. My determination, my patience, I had to have patience. It was many different factors that played into me coming back, I can't take the credit for it all. The trainers at the school, my family, they all pushed me to come back. They were always there for me supporting me and telling me the right things and never looking down on me. My teammates, even though we were competing they were always telling me I'm getting better and I look better and I look good. I knew I wasn't at the point where I wanted to be, but they always stayed on me and I'm just grateful to be here.
Q: How familiar are you with the Vikings offense and how prepared are you to make an immediate impact on a team that's looking for a deeper run?
A: I think it just comes with time. Learning the offense and picking up on the offense, I spoke with the coaches, they've showed me some plays and showed me what their schemes are. It just comes with time, and preparing and getting ready for camp and the season. Over time I'll do better and I'll get better.
Q: The coaches were talking last night about how you run a lot of routes that they already run in their offence. What do you feel like are the routes that you run the best?
A: I feel like I can work on all the routes, honestly. At this level there's better competition, so you have to get better. I'm really looking forward to camp, and learning and getting coached hard, and competing and being a better
Q: Rick Spielman yesterday compared you to Eric Moulds. Do you know anything about him at all?
A: I don't, I don't at all.
Q: Is that okay being compared to a Mississippi State guy?
A: I don't have a problem with that.
Q: Coach Zimmer is complimentary of your competitiveness. How did you develop that?
A: Just playing every position in high school and grade school, from fullback to linebacker, defensive end and safety, and then moving to receiver it was just be natural and be who you are. And I was big and physical, it's just natural honestly.
Q: Zimmer really liked your blocking. Is that why you liked to block, because you played all of those other positions?
A: I guess so. It's natural honestly. I learned how to block and it helped the team so I stuck with it and I just got better over time. I'm looking forward to doing it on the next level and continuing to get better at it.
Q: You said you were a fan of players. Who were some of the receivers that you watched growing up and that you kind of molded your game after, and who, if you had to pick a player, would you compare your game to?
A: Never molded my game after anyone. Wouldn't say that I picked a player to mold my game after, but I did watch Marvin Harrison growing up, Dez Bryant, Reggie Wayne, all the great receiver when I was young and at the time were scoring, like Chad Johnson. I would just watch receivers, it wasn't me trying to mold my game, just kind of played the game out of what I loved and what I knew. At this level of course I'll pick up on things that guys do well and try to add it to my game and get better, break down their film and see what they're doing on certain routes to win. That's what it's all about, just getting better and crafting and working on your technique.
Q: It's not too often that you see players take their kids out on the stage with them when they get drafted. What was kind of your thought process with that?
A: It was just natural to me. It was that important to me to bring her. Going away for school it was my goal to reach this level, because I knew I had to take care of my daughter. That's what I wanted to do and I just felt it was the best thing to do for me.
Q: How did your daughter help you stay grounded during your recovery?
A: Every day, every day you just got to be thankful for your kids. She's my biggest blessing and I don't take her for granted. When I'm training and I'm going hard and I'm playing in games, I bring myself back down to earth because I've still got to be a father and I've still got to look out for her and teach her and show her the way. Just appreciative of her.
Q: What did she think of last night and just of the whole scene?
A: I would think she practiced for it honestly. She was posing for every picture, she knew it was coming. The questions she answered, she was spot on. I was thinking she was going to say something else but it was fun and it was enjoyable, I think she enjoyed it all. I think she felt the energy of the whole city and just felt good about it. She was in high spirits the whole week and just was happy for me. She wouldn't stop jumping around from the morning to the night. I couldn't slow her down, but I enjoyed it and being with her.
Q: How old is she?
A: She's three years old.
Q: How excited is she to be going to the Vikings?
A: I don't think she understands yet, but I think she's really excited and I think that she grasps it in a sense.
Q: There's been a lot of talk about your speed in comparison to the other receivers. How have you been able to create separation so well?
A: I don't really have an answer for that. I just think it's game instincts. It's something that you have inside of you. Knowing what to do, when to do it and how to do it. I just think I do that really well.
Q: To have your daughter at the draft in your hometown, could you have pictured that moment any better?
A: It was an amazing experience that me, my family and friends will never forget. We will share that to the grave. It was just amazing. I never thought, starting playing football, in ten more years when I started playing football, ten years down the road I'd be in Chicago getting drafted by the Minnesota Vikings. I'm honored, I'm blessed and glad to be here. I'm looking forward to getting my career started at the next level.
Q: I'm sure you've thought of playing in the same offense as Adrian Peterson and Teddy Bridgewater. Has the reality set in?
A: I just think we can do a lot of good things with any great running back. You're able to get your receivers and everybody else involved. It's just a great opportunity for not only myself but everybody else. With the dynamic of the team, how things played out with the draft I think that I landed in the right place for me and the fit with the offense
Q: What was it like being with Laremy Tunsil and seeing him go through that last night?
A: It was tough. Me and Robert [Nkemdiche] we were there supporting him. Coach Freeze was also there. We were all there supporting him. He stayed in high spirits. That's the type of guy Laremy is so I knew he would be alright eventually. Whatever team drafted him, they were going to get the best Laremy Tunsil. We all know what he can do his capability and his limits. I'm just focusing on my future and I'm sure Laremy is focusing on his and getting to Miami and playing at a high level.