As a native of Indianapolis, Washington Commanders wide receiver Terry McLaurin has always had a front-row seat to AFC South football. Growing up in the same city as the Colts, McLaurin naturally gravitated towards the talented wideouts who dominated the division.
With 4,281 receiving yards in his first four NFL seasons, McLaurin has become a force to be reckoned with on the field. When asked about his sources of inspiration, he immediately points to two AFC South legends - Andre Johnson and DeAndre Hopkins.
Andre Johnson, a standout receiver for the Houston Texans, was selected third overall in the 2003 NFL Draft. Throughout his 12 seasons with the Texans, Johnson made a name for himself, earning seven Pro Bowl appearances and being named a two-time All-Pro. Although he also spent time with the Colts and Titans, Johnson's impact was felt most in Houston. His career totals of over 14,000 receiving yards speak to his undeniable talent and consistency.
On the other hand, DeAndre Hopkins, currently playing for the Tennessee Titans, began his career with the Texans as well. Known for his incredible athleticism and reliability, Hopkins was selected as an All-Pro in his final three seasons with Houston. After a successful stint with the Arizona Cardinals, Hopkins returned to the AFC South with the Titans, signing a lucrative two-year deal worth $26 million.
What sets Johnson and Hopkins apart is their ability to perform at a high level, regardless of the quarterback throwing them the ball. McLaurin admires their consistency and mental toughness, traits that have undoubtedly contributed to their success. As McLaurin looks to make his mark in the NFL, he hopes to emulate the unwavering dedication and resilience displayed by his role models.
McLaurin understands the importance of having a consistent signal-caller and hopes that the team can address this issue moving forward.
As McLaurin continues to make a name for himself in the NFL, he remains inspired by the legacies of Andre Johnson and DeAndre Hopkins. Their ability to dominate the AFC South and excel regardless of the circumstances serves as a constant reminder for McLaurin to stay focused and determined on his path to greatness.