You probably know by now that Vikings wide receiver Adam Thielen is Minnesota made. He grew up in Detroit Lakes and played on a $500 scholarship at Minnesota State-Mankato.
After finishing his college career he was about to take an internship with with a company that sold dental supplies when he decided to try to make it in the NFL as an un-drafted, virtually unheard of wide receiver.
Made it he did, and he's now sixth in the NFL with 392 yards this season. If you have 5-10 minutes you should read the article he published today at The Players' Tribune. In it, he credits the Minnesota mentality for taking him as far as he's gone.
"Minnesota is a blue-collar state," he wrote. "We don’t care about the spotlight. We just like to work hard. And play hard, too. I like to think that that Minnesota mentality has served me pretty well. The odds have pretty much always been stacked against me, but I kept my head down, worked hard and trusted that the rest would take care of itself."
On top of that, he felt the same pain Vikings fans felt with all of the heartbreakers they've had in his lifetime.
"I mean, I grew up watching this team, but never got to see the Vikings win a Super Bowl. I’ve witnessed the same heartbreak over the years that all Vikings fans have. The kick in ’98. The 2000 NFC championship. The Favre interception against the Saints. There have been so many great players and great teams for as long as I’ve been watching the Vikings, but we’ve never gotten over that hump and won a championship."
Thielen gets to play the Packers this Sunday night. The last time he played Green Bay he had 12 catches for 202 yards and two touchdowns, all career highs.