In the latest issue of Sports Illustrated, Ted Ginn Jr gives a brief interview with SI's Andrew Lawrence. The interview is short, but it's still interesting nonetheless, and is part of an SI feature called "A Rookie's Tale." Here are some highlights:
I'm a grown man, and what happened happened. You move on. I could have come in [to the NFL] as a national champ, but it means nothing. You're back to being a freshman, a rookie.
(On Dolphins fans booing when he was drafted at number 9)
I've been booed before, and I've gone through way bigger things than being booed. The team has been great to me. I've known Cam for many years. I've known receivers coach Robiskie for years too. I've known Chris Chambers damn near my whole life. I don't see having this type of family, this type of support, anywhere else.
(On his academic difficulties)
I struggled right off the bat. I failed first grade. Teachers could never cope with how I learned so slowly. In sixth grade a teacher asked me to spell a word. I told him I couldn't spell it, but he kept badgering me. So I just didn't say anything. He told me, "Your life is going to be flipping hamburgers at Burger King."
(On why he had such trouble)
In eighth grade, I got diagnosed with a learning disability. I just need more time. If it takes you two weeks to read a book, it will take me four. Or it might take three or four times of you telling me what's going on. High school helped me get comfortable with where I was. Sometimes I had two or three teachers to a subject, and they made a way for me to learn everything a regular student learns, just in more time. It was a major turnaround from almost failing almost every grade, seriously, to getting on the honor roll, finishing 16th in my class, and making it to college. Living through that makes things a lot easier for me now.
Wow. Interesting. I didn't know about these learning troubles he had. But I bet Cam did know, which could be why he was preaching all camp long that Ginn would be brought in as a return man first. I think Cam was trying to protect Ginn, knowing that handling the return game AND learning the offensive system as a receiver might be a bit much to ask for him, as he probably expected it to take time. Knowing this, I have to give more props to Cam for knowing what was best for his player. Also, with Ginn having gone through all this, he seems like he'll be much better at handling adversity than someone else at his age.
Here's to a long and successful career for Teddy Ginn as a Miami Dolphin!