“There are a lot of similarities there. He was able to develop quickly. Then when we walk onto the pitch and talk football, that line of communication makes it a lot easier.”
Kirk, originally a second-round selection of the Arizona Cardinals in the 2018 NFL Draft, has 25 receptions for 362 yards and three touchdowns in six games this season. He has 261 career receptions for 3,264 yards and 21 touchdowns.
“Some guys just love being in the NFL, being able to put on a jersey on Sunday and play some shots,” Kirk said. “I don’t. I don’t play football to be average. I play football to be good at what I do. That’s what drives me.”
Kirk and Lawrence are offensive basemen, leaders of a team that has won half as many games in six weeks as it has in the past two seasons. Kirk said the improvement reflects a change he’s felt throughout the offseason, training camp and regular season.
“It’s a different team and a different culture,” he said.
And though the team has struggled to win close games this season, with all four losses by a score or less, the fifth-year veteran said his message to younger teammates remains consistent.
“It’s a long season,” Kirk said. “There are 17 games now. When you do it and prepare week in and week out, it’s a long season. You have guys just out of college and it’s almost two seasons of college football if you count the pre-season.
“With the leadership we have in our dressing room, there’s no panic. There’s no panic button. There’s none of that.”
Click below to listen to the entire O-Zone podcast with Kirk.