Are the Minnesota Vikings counting on a second-year breakout from Laquon Treadwell?

Difficult as it may be to sell such an idea after a disastrous rookie campaign, the organization seems very encouraged by his work this offseason.

Offensive coordinator Pat Shurmur heaped praise upon the 2016 first-rounder Wednesday, echoing previous comments from head coach Mike Zimmer that expressed optimism about Treadwell’s future.

“He’s had a great, in my opinion, five-and-a-half weeks,” Shurmur said, according to Ben Goessling of ESPN. “He came back and he was really on point with what he’s supposed to be doing mentally. He’s been out here competing and doing a nice job running routes and catching the ball. Understanding where he fits in the running game and who to block. To this point, we’ve been really pleased with his progress based on a year ago.”

Treadwell was expected to be the answer to Minnesota’s long-standing receiver issues, but managed just one reception for 15 yards across nine games.

If the former Ole Miss standout can make a leap this season and carve out a role alongside now-established talents Stefon Diggs and Adam Thielen, it would go a long way toward helping the Vikings take the next step.

Minnesota finished the 2016 campaign ranked 18th in passing offense, averaging 240 yards per game.

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