Terry McLaurin has established himself as one of the best wide receivers in the NFL despite dealing with several quarterback changes over the last few years.
McLaurin has had six different starting quarterbacks since joining the league in 2019. While most players would have to make significant changes, the Ohio State product continues to put up big numbers week after week.
McLaurin’s ability to adjust to a new quarterback was demonstrated just a few weeks ago, when Washington Football Team quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick suffered a serious hip injury in Week 1. As a result, Taylor Heinicke had to step in as the team’s starter. McLaurin carried Washington’s passing attack with 11 receptions for 107 yards and a touchdown in Heinicke’s first start of the season. It was an outstanding performance against an elite cornerback in James Bradberry on Thursday Night Football .
Despite the fact that Washington hasn’t played particularly well this season, McLaurin believes the reigning NFC East champions will rebound.
Terry McLaurin joined us to talk about his NFL career thus far, Washington’s start to the 2021 season, representing Team Milk, and much more. GonnaNeedMilk.com presents this interview for
— Milk (@GonnaNeedMilk) September 3, 2021
Terry McLaurin: I believe that when Team Milk reached out to my representatives, they gave me an opportunity to collaborate with them in a unique way, which I believe people will see as more content is released. They probably wanted to know about my milk journey, how I got into drinking milk, and how it’s been a part of my life when we first partnered up. I started off by telling them I didn’t care for milk when I was younger, but as I grew older and became more competitive, I began to see the benefits of milk, not just in terms of strong teeth and bones, but also in terms of fuel and recovery. It was fantastic to work with someone who allowed me to be myself and express myself. They also allow me to demonstrate why I believe milk is important not only for nutritional reasons but also for physical benefits.
The Spun: You mentioned that you wanted to show off your personality. What was it like for Team Milk to catch a football from a cannon ? TM: Yeah, it was pretty crazy.
It took a few tries, but kudos to the people who made it happen. There was a lot more work done behind the scenes than just catching the ball on that particular day, so kudos to everyone involved. It was a unique experience because it felt like everyone was cheering when I finally caught the ball. You never know, and you hope it works, but judging when the ball is in the air and the wind is swirling is much more difficult. As a result, I felt like everyone on set was cheering when I finally caught it.
— Milk (@GonnaNeedMilk) October 1, 2021
The Spun: Can you tell me a little about your workout routine? Is it different every year? TM: That’s a good question.
I believe you should always be prepared to adapt. It’s critical to have a routine, and Coach Meyer helped me establish one early at Ohio State. He hammered home the importance of having a routine – how you mentally prepare for a game, how you physically prepare for a game. I’ve taken some things from college and applied them in the NFL, but there are also some things I’ve learned exclusively in the NFL. Because availability is the best ability in this league, it’s critical to be aware of what you put in your body and how you treat it. When the time comes, you want to be able to perform at your best.
The Spun: You’ve worked with a variety of starting quarterbacks. How do you maintain an elite level of performance despite the constant changes at that position? TM: I believe it’s the mindset I try to bring to the situation.
Obviously, I have no control over who is playing quarterback back there. But I have some control over how much faith they have in me. It’s critical for me to get on the same page with each quarterback and develop a rapport with them. I’ve learned a lot from each of them, and they’ve helped me become a better receiver. Coach Hartline, my college receiver coach, taught me that my job is to make the quarterback’s job as simple as possible. I want them to have faith in me to do my job and deliver on my promises. When it comes to that, I kind of have a no-excuse mentality, whether it’s extra coverage or shadowing me with the best cornerbacks. Every Sunday, I come in with the intention of finishing my work. Every year, I feel like I’ve taken small steps forward because I never become complacent.
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) September 19, 2021
TM: From a personal standpoint, Dwayne has always been like a little brother to me. We had been together since Ohio State, so on draft night, we had all these hopes and dreams. We accomplished a lot together, but clearly it didn’t work out for him here. He’s still young, and I believe he treated his entire stay here as a learning opportunity. He had some good qualities, but he also had some flaws that he would like to correct. He’s got all the talent in the world, and it’s great to see him get back on his feet. When he gets another chance, I believe he’ll be prepared.
The Spun: How does the offense feel about Taylor Heinicke leading the way now that Ryan Fitzpatrick is out?
TM: When a quarterback changes, the first thing I try to do is get on the same page as the new quarterback. We make an effort to have those discussions, especially once we have a game plan. We’re trying to figure out where he’ll throw the ball and how we’ll execute certain one-on-one matchups. We obviously didn’t get all of Taylor’s reps in the offseason because Fitz was the starter. But what makes Taylor special is that he was a member of our team last year, so we know he can play. He is always prepared for the unexpected and holds himself accountable when he makes a mistake. It’s fun to play with someone who will give you opportunities to make plays.
Update: Terry McLaurin is still good pic.twitter.com/fjfLH0ZSAx
— Mark Bullock (@MarkBullockNFL) September 26, 2021
The Spun: I enjoy going up against James Bradberry and Darius Slay.
TM: In the last few years, I’ve had to deal with them three or four times. Those are the rare opportunities where I get to face a really good cornerback multiple times, and each time it gets a little bit harder. Each matchup is different if you get to see a good cornerback multiple times. Because they have film on you, you must adjust on the fly. It’s one of the aspects of playing top cornerbacks that I really enjoy.
The Spun: Have you had the opportunity to watch your alma mater, Ohio State, and if so, what are your impressions of Chris Olave and Garrett Wilson as prospects? TM: I don’t miss any of those games [laughs].
I try to watch Ohio State football whenever I can. It’s exciting to see the wide receiver group for this year. I believe it is the best group in the country, and the numbers seem to back me up. It’s entertaining to watch Garrett do his thing. I think he’ll do well in the NFL as a slot receiver, but he can also play outside. He’s very savvy in the way he runs routes, possesses incredible hands, and excels at the catch point – which is crucial. Chris Olave, on the other hand, I believe is smooth but also very precise with his routes. From both inside and outside, he can run any route on the route tree. He can stretch the ball vertically and has excellent catch-and-run ability. I believe both of them will hear their names called early next spring.
HBD, @TheTerry_25! 🎂🎁🎈
— Ohio State on BTN (@OhioStateOnBTN) September 15, 2021
The Spun: And how long do you think it will take him to get things back on track?
TM: When I first saw it, I was surprised, but not completely surprised. Coach Meyer and I still have a great friendship, though we don’t talk as much now that we’re on different teams. Football is in his blood simply because he is the kind of guy he is. It’s great to see him back on the sidelines doing what he enjoys. When it comes to turnaround time, you never know how long it will take. Each year is so unique. We’ve seen teams go from last to first, and from first to last, if you catch my drift. He brings attention to detail, competitiveness, and the ability to focus on the task at hand to an NFL team. He is also a winner. There are many differences between college and professional football, but there are some fundamental aspects of the game that apply to all levels.
The Spun: What motivates you to make an All-Pro team or make the Pro Bowl? TM: That’s a good question.
I believe it is a personal goal of mine to make those All-Pro teams, play in the Pro Bowl, and eventually be inducted into the Hall of Fame. It does not, however, happen overnight. You must have a weekly improvement process in place. You must be able to learn from the mistakes you have made. I believe you’ll notice that the players who make the All-Pro teams are consistent, have no production dips, and consistently make big plays. That’s exactly what I’m aiming for right now. I’m going to keep working until I achieve my goal.
Love y’all! https://t.co/lEdqihjSo8
— Terry McLaurin (@TheTerry_25) September 17, 2021
The Spun: You jumped into the crowd after your touchdown in Week 2. Isn’t it great to be back among the fans? TM: It was fantastic.
It was great to be able to do that once more. You don’t realize how much you miss the fans until they’re no longer there. It’s been a difficult year for the entire world, so having the fans back out here is fantastic. This sport is what it is because of the fans. It’s a blessing to be able to stand in front of them at home and away games. We’re hoping for a big turnout in Atlanta.
The Spun: What would you say to Washington fans who are worried about their team’s 1-2 start?
TM: We have a team that recognizes we have some flaws that need to be addressed, but we have a great group of leaders at the helm, led by Coach Rivera. All we have to do now is get better at what we’re doing. On offense, we need to cut down on the turnovers and penalties that stymie our drives. With so many negative plays, it’s difficult to beat any team in the league. As a result, we must take what the defense provides and try to execute as much as possible. We understand that our defense wants to play at a higher level, so we must play complementary football.
— NFL Films (@NFLFilms) September 14, 2021
Despite being a third-year player, he has provided a steady and calm presence in Washington’s locker room. This weekend, McLaurin will try to lead the Washington Football Team to a win over the Atlanta Falcons. You can read more of our interviews with athletes and media stars here.