Sophomore Slump for Takk McKinley?

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Takk McKinley vs Jacksonville (Getty Images)

The Slump

Year two, it’s inevitable, right? Takk McKinley has no way to avoid it, a sophomore slump is going to happen one way or another. If you are a conspiracy theorist, maybe you can make this argument. However, just look at McKinley’s fellow counterparts; such as Deion Jones (second year Pro Bowler), Keanu Neal (second year Pro Bowler), Vic Beasley (NFL sack leader, second year Pro Bowler). They all point in the direction of progression in their second year as a pro on the Falcons defense.

“Just because they had a good second year, don’t guarantee that I’ll have a good second year,” he said. “Sophomore slump is a huge thing,” McKinley said after Monday morning’s practice. The frustration is evident for McKinley as a shoulder bruise has kept him sidelined most of camp.

The Injury

McKinley and the team both say that it is nothing serious. We can’t forget that he did have offseason surgery on that same shoulder over the summer. This could be where McKinley frustration stems from, as he continues to watch from the side.

It is likely that McKinley does not see the field for their first preseason game against the Jets. There is little harm to him missing one exhibition game, as he continues to get 100% healthy. But if he does play, you can bet on him getting after the quarterback with little hesitation.

The Atlanta Falcons released their first official depth chart for the 2018 season, and McKinley is leading the way at defensive end. This slight setback isn’t keeping the team from putting him on top of their list. McKinley said that he believes the Falcons defensive line could be one of the best this season. If that is true, without a doubt, Takk McKinley made the biggest leap.

McKinley is a player who holds a ton of confidence. He said that he believes that he should have had 13 sacks last season. It’s difficult for me to argue that, considering he was often wrecking havoc at the line of scrimmage. McKinley really does have the potential to be one of the leagues most feared defensive ends.

Forget about the sophomore slump, Takk has arrived and it’s “hunting” season.

Rise Up!

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