Jennings still stalks success, and wants to bring the Vikings with him

  • Article by: DAN WIEDERER , Star Tribune
  • Updated: July 25, 2013 - 10:33 AM

After years as a foe, new Vikings wideout Greg Jennings has his sights set on proving to his teammates and the NFL that he can still torture secondaries.

#SuccessStalkers

The creator of the hashtag isn’t quite certain what sparked him to stir his Twitter movement. But Greg Jennings knows the crusade has proved invigorating and won’t be slowing anytime soon.

On many mornings, the new Vikings receiver energizes his own pursuit of excellence with a push for his Twitter followers — more than 308,000 and counting — to do the same.

Jennings will call roll in the #SuccessStalkers community, wondering who else is attacking their day with purpose and verve.

Inevitably, he’s flooded with replies. The tweets come from professionals pushing toward job promotions. Students celebrating A’s on big tests. Single moms taking summer classes while working two jobs.

Attitude-wise, they all fit right in with a 29-year-old NFL veteran who is suddenly on a quest to re-establish himself as one of the league’s elite. In a new city. In a new offense. With a new unproven quarterback.

Said Jennings: “Whatever walk of life you’re in, your goal should always be to stalk some kind of success. So you have to ask yourself daily, ‘What are you doing to truly be successful?’ Because everyone has it in them. Everyone has that key to their success. But the only person who can unlock it is you.”

Perhaps it sounds corny, maybe a bit hackneyed. So what?

Jennings wants to make clear he arrived in the Twin Cities devoted to elevating his game. Perhaps equally important, he is driven to bring others along with him.

On Thursday afternoon in Mankato, Jennings will check into Vikings training camp eager to recruit 89 new teammates to the movement.

He has been asked to quickly generate momentum with quarterback Christian Ponder while also serving as sage to an ultra-young receiving corps that includes first-round draft pick Cordarrelle Patterson.

The introspective receiver senses a contagious hunger within this bunch. Which is one of the significant reasons he wound up with the Vikings in March, signing a five-year deal with a group he senses has a dangerous combination of talent, drive and unity.

“I see an organization that’s on the move,” Jennings said. “Obviously you don’t come some place if you think they’re not going in the direction you want to go. But I see the Vikings stalking their success as well.”

Forgotten man?

After a productive, seven-season stay with the Packers, Jennings hit free agency in March seeking “something different.” He wanted a new opportunity to prove himself. He wanted, in his words, to feel wanted.

But why here? Why now? If his predominant goal is to succeed at the highest level, why was he so eager to leave Green Bay, where he posted three 1,000-yard receiving seasons, went to two Pro Bowls and contributed four grabs, 64 yards and a pair of touchdowns to the franchise’s Super Bowl XLV triumph?

Jennings can summarize why his time in Green Bay ran out. The Packers, he believes, already had started moving in a new direction, continually fortifying their receiving corps and allowing promising young playmakers to wedge out the older guys.

So why prolong the inevitable?

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