Minnesota Vikings rookie running back Jhurell Pressley is an undrafted free agent out of New Mexico. Jhurell is an extremely talented player who will have the opportunity to learn from one of the league's best running backs in Adrian Peterson as a rookie. While he was undrafted, he is by no means short on talent. In fact, in our opinion, Jhurell Pressley is one of the best running backs in thi year's draft class. Here at Matt and Mike Sports, we were fortunate to be able to interview him leading up to the 2016 NFL Draft (interview here). We had a chance to catch up with Jhurell after the draft, and here it is. Questions in purple, Jhurell's answers in gold.
Jhurell, first off, congratulations on signing with the Minnesota Vikings. What was the draft experience like for you?
The draft experience was unique because I was so ready to find out where I went. I definitely enjoyed my experience and am glad I ended up at Minnesota Vikings.
Although you went undrafted, you landed in what appears to be a great spot in Minnesota. What's it like to have a chance to learn from Adrian Peterson?
I do believe that I landed in a great situation but having the opportunity to learn from the best RB in the league is a great experience to build on my game.
How has your experience with the team been so far? How are OTAs going?
I feel like the Minnesota Vikings have the best vets in the league because everyone helps each other to become a better professional athlete.
The Vikings have quietly put together one of the NFL's best young offenses over the past couple of seasons. Are there any players in particular that you have enjoyed watching or working with?
I enjoy working with everyone on the team because everyone has their own style of play that challenges other players to be great.
Mike Zimmer seems like a pretty intense coach who likes high character players who work hard and will do whatever they can to help the team. You fit that description perfectly. What's the culture like in Minnesota? What's it like playing for Coach Zimmer?
You definitely hit the nail on the head with that remark because I am ready to do whatever Coach Zimmer needs me to do to win.
Taking a look at the 2016 NFL schedule, are there any games in particular that you are looking forward to?
No Sir just looking to show out.
Running back is a historically deep position in the NFL Draft. Many great recent running backs have been drafted late, or not at all. Priest Holmes and Arian Foster went undrafted. Terrell Davis was a sixth round pick who made a name for himself with Denver's coaching staff after one big special teams tackle in the preseason. In the NFL, it's not how you start it's how you finish. Although you were undrafted, you have both the talent and the passion to make an impact in the NFL. What are some of your goals for this season?
Goals are to make the team and become a reason why the Minnesota Vikings win games.
You were a pretty experienced special teams player in college as well as a running back. Have you been working mainly at running back in camp so far, or also on special teams?
The key to being an all around RB is to be able do more than just run the ball and special teams is my best friend.
You are one of three running backs on the roster in Minnesota, along with Adrian Peterson and Jerick McKinnon. How do you guys work together as a group so far?
The running back group as an whole works well together by encouraging and helping each other.
Your football career nearly ended as a result of a blood clot sustained in college. Now you have a chance to play in the NFL. You fought it, you overcame it, and now you're here. What's that like?
God has blessed me and continues to bless me and I thank him everyday for that.
What advice do you have for young players in high school or coming up through the college ranks who are working to overcome injuries?
Always keep pushing because you never know what God has in store for you.
Thank you for your time Jhurell, and best of luck heading into the season! Here at Matt and Mike Sports, we're rooting hard for you, and can't wait to watch you on the field this season!--Matt Koontz and Mike Bertasso, Matt and Mike Sports.
We would like to thank Glen Wallace from Peterson Sports for facilitating this interview, as well as Jhurell for taking the time to do this interview. Glen has asked us to add the following statement, that Glen Wallace, James Peterson and Dave Thompson and the entire Peterson Sports family are very proud of Jhurell. Here at Matt and Mike Sports, we are thrilled to see Jhurell's NFL career beginning.
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