Takkarist McKinley promised the grandmother who raised him that he would become a top college football player. He went even further on Thursday night
Takkarist McKinley promised the grandmother who raised him that he would become a top college football player. When he was picked by the Atlanta Falcons in the first-round of Thursdays NFL draft he remembered her again, giving an emotional speech as he clutched her photograph.
I made a promise to her and I stuck to it. I made that promise, man, a fired up Takkaris McKinley told the NFL Network after he was picked. I told her. Before she passed away, I was going to live my dream. I was gonna go [to a Division I college]. I was gonna get out of Richmond, I was gonna get out of Oakland. I was gonna go to the NFL. I made that promise to her, man. Thirty seconds later she passed away. And this is who I do it for. This is who I do it for, man … Cmon, man! Get to the damn quarterback! We gonna get to the quarterback!
McKinley then challenged the NFLs policy on expletives as he spoke to the NFL Networks Deion Sanders. It means every fucking thing to me … Excuse my language, fine me later.
McKinleys grandmother, Myrtle Collins, raised him on her own in the tough neighborhood of Richmond in the San Francisco Bay Area. She kept him out of the way of the gang violence that plagued the area, and they would sit in and watch wrestling together. She would be into it more than me, McKinley told the LA Times last year. She would be, Oh, this ref, theyre cheating! and all this. It was just crazy, man.
Myrtle Collins died in 2011.
The Falcons traded the No31 pick and their third- and seventh-round picks to the Seattle Seahawks in order to take McKinley at No26. They reached the Super Bowl last season, losing to the New England Patriots in an epic finale.