Don't blame Laquon Treadwell for his terrible rookie season. Blame injuries.
According to the Star Tribune's Andrew Krammer, Treadwell's broken thumb, hamstring and ankle injuries bothered him more than anyone knew. If true, that explains why the first-round pick finished the season with just one catch.
During organized team activities in May Vikings offensive coordinator Pat Shurmur raved about Treadwell's growth in the early stages of his second season.
"Well, he’s had a great, in my opinion, five and a half weeks," Shurmur said to reporters. "He’s been out here competing and doing a nice job running routes and catching the ball. Understanding where he fits in the running game and who to block. To this point, we’ve been really pleased with his progress based on a year ago."
Wide receivers coach Darrell Hazell told Vikings.com's Mike Wobschall that Treadwell also battled a learning curve as a rookie.
"He's been amazing," Hazell said of Treadwell's growth. "He's a extremely talented young man. He's big, he's strong, he's fast, he's got quickness. One of the things that he and I talked about is making that next transition. You're coming out of college and some weeks you play against good players and some weeks you don't play against good players. He got away with some things in his college days that he was not able to get away with in that first year."
Not only is he healthy again, but Treadwell gets a full offseason with Shurmur calling the plays, whereas last year Shurmur took over midseason after Norv Turner quit.