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  1. #1
    singersp's Avatar
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    Promise fulfilled for Wiggins

    From the BOSTON GLOBE

    [size=18px]Promise fulfilled for Wiggins[/size]

    By Ron Borges
    December 11, 2005


    Nobody ever gave Jermaine Wiggins a chance until he got to Minnesota, so he's on the right team, because no one gave the Vikings a chance after first Randy Moss, then the 'Love Boat," and finally quarterback Daunte Culpepper all left the dock.

    Yet as of this morning, no tight end in the NFC has caught more passes than Wiggins, and no team has been more surprising than the Vikings, who are on a five-game winning streak and face the Rams at the Metrodome today.

    Wiggins, a product of East Boston High's practice field out by Logan Airport, where half the time he couldn't hear the quarterback above the roar of jets, has one of the oddest stories of any athlete. He's a guy who's always produced when given a chance but who seldom got one.

    A case in point was his brief stay in New England, where he won a Super Bowl in January 2002. That season Wiggins was used sparingly but then started two of three playoff games and set a club playoff record with 10 catches against the Raiders, including three on the final drive to set up the snow-covered winning kick by Adam Vinatieri in overtime that began the Patriots' Super Bowl era. By the spring, he was gone.

    That has been the story of Wiggins's six-year march through the NFL, a road that has led him to the Jets, the Patriots, the Colts, the Panthers (with whom he again appeared in the Super Bowl), and finally the Vikings, who made him a promise a year ago he wasn't sure they'd keep.

    'They said they'd give me a chance consistently, but because of all I've been through, I'm always going to be skeptical," said Wiggins, who has 54 catches this year and sole possession of a surprising team record. What Viking receiver got to 100 catches fastest? Moss, who was dealt to the Raiders in the offseason after six spectacular years and one injury-riddled one? Cris Carter? Anthony Carter? Ahmad Rashad? Sammy White? Steve Jordan?

    How about Jermaine Wiggins?

    Wiggins did in 20 games what it took Moss 21 to do -- reach the 100-catch plateau, which Wiggins did Oct. 23. He got there in large measure because Minnesota kept its word, starting him in 13 of the 14 games for which he was healthy last year. Wiggins responded by leading the club with 71 receptions for 705 yards and four touchdowns.

    'If you look at my track record, when my number has been called, I've stepped up," Wiggins said. 'The problem for me was this league is heavily based on potential. What a guy did at the combine. What kind of program was he from? Where did he get drafted? How tall is he? How fast does he run?

    'I didn't go to the combine. I didn't get drafted. I don't have the measurables. I'm not the prototype tight end with all the numbers, but I produce. Not everybody in the NFL notices that."

    What people miss are the little things that have allowed Wiggins to not only survive but prosper. Things like hours of studying tape and years of believing in himself.

    'I study my opponents and I study ways to get open," Wiggins said. 'I have a feel for the game. I know how to work a zone and beat a man. And I tell myself I can do it. I always have, at every level, so I'm confident. I don't need anyone to tell me I can play. I just needed someone to let me."

    Wiggins will tell you the same is true of his team, which appeared dead in the water after starting the year with a Super Bowl ticket-scalping scandal enveloping coach Mike Tice. Then Moss was traded and the team started 2-5. The nadir came when charges of sexual improprieties on an offday cruise came to light and were soon followed by Culpepper's season-ending injury Oct. 30.

    With the Bears dominating the NFC North and the Vikings' offensive leader of the past five years lost for the season, it appeared that they simply would be playing out the string. But Brad Johnson took over at quarterback and the 14-year veteran has gone undefeated as a starter while finding Wiggins 18 times the past three weeks. That reminds Wiggins of a season four years ago and a team that opened 5-5, lost its quarterback, and ended up Super Bowl champs.

    'You can't help but think about it," said Wiggins. 'It's human nature. None of this is shocking to me. It's how it is for a kid from East Boston. It's the hard road. I understand I have no control over how people talk about me or my team. All I control is what I do when I step on the field.

    'There were a lot of outside distractions for a while here but I think we finally decided we were a better team than we'd showed. We were making a lot of mistakes and we believed if we eliminated them, we'd show what we can do."

    Once Wiggins found a team willing to eliminate the mistake of overlooking him, he's begun to do the same.

    "If at first you don't succeed, parachuting is not for you"

  2. #2
    smootloot is offline Starter
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    Re: Promise fulfilled for Wiggins

    wiggins should get some pro bowl attention but wont because he doesnt play for the giants or a east coast team. i hope he gets to the pro bowl
    "Ron Mexico is here."

  3. #3
    Lotza's Avatar
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    Re: Promise fulfilled for Wiggins

    WIGGINS is the man.



    prolly one of my fav. players ever.

























    Go vikes!!

  4. #4
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    Re: Promise fulfilled for Wiggins

    If the season was on the line and we needed a completion for a first down or a score, Wiggins would be the man. He's as tough as nails and he performs in the clutch.
    614f282e3c576bcf94e1d24d7a29bead

  5. #5
    Mr. Purple's Avatar
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    Re: Promise fulfilled for Wiggins

    Wiggins should deff have a plane ticket to hawaii this offseason....THe guy is as clutch as robert horry!

    Theres NOTHING greater then a Florida Gator!
    "I promise everyone this. When Childress is let go in two years I can honestly say this.
    "I am not surprised"."-PurplePackerEater

  6. #6
    PurplePeopleEaters's Avatar
    PurplePeopleEaters is offline Jersey Retired
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    Re: Promise fulfilled for Wiggins

    Wiggins is the best TE we have had in a long time... Plus he has the coolest nickname ever.

    Wiggity wiggity wack. Jermainiac.

  7. #7
    Wiggles67's Avatar
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    Re: Promise fulfilled for Wiggins

    I would love to see him in the pro bowl this year but unfortunately he wont go. His numbers are as good as TE in the league but he doesnt have the hype and he doesnt get the attention that others get. Just like he said said in the article, his not your typical TE so he really doesnt get the recoginition he deserves.

    At first I wasnt impressed with Wiggins, he always seemed kind of cocky and almost arrogant. But after continuing to read articles like this about him I am beginning to understand him more more. He has had to have confidence in himself in order to make it to where he is today. This is the first article I've read that has more than a few quotes from him in it and I will admit he really doesnt come off as cocky as I had thought. He speaks the truth all he wants is to be given a chance.

    No one works harder than him on sunday and yeah I would want to throw the ball to him too when the game is on the line...he just doesnt drop it.

    Hats off to you Wiggins!

    "I choose my company by the beating of their hearts, not the swelling of their heads"

  8. #8
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    Re: Promise fulfilled for Wiggins

    Wiggins is the key to the last 2 years.

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