“My mindset is to work hard every day so I can get better and help the team get better,” Thielen said.
For now, he goes to practice and meetings each day, doing the same things as the starting receivers, but come game day, he’ll be in street clothes, either in Minnesota for road games or at Metrodome for the home games. He said the entire team will be traveling to London for the Week 3 game against Pittsburgh.
“Really, not much has changed,” he said. “It will be different not traveling to the road games, but right now, it’s just practice every day, like before.”
There are no guarantees for Thielen. The Vikings signed two receivers to the practice squad so he’s not automatically the next one in should there be an injury to one of the top five. Plus, there are a bunch of free-agent receivers that are currently unemployed that could be signed at any time.
But this was a significant accomplishment for a Division II player who really wasn’t on the NFL radar a year ago.
“I still have a long way to go,” Thielen said. “My ultimate goal is to get on the 53-man roster. But this was a big step for me. I’m happy, and I’m in a good spot.”
Chad Courrier is a Free Press staff writer. To contact him, call 507-344-6353, email at email@example.com or follow his Twitter feed @ChadCourrier.