Takkarist McKinley is ditching social media.
For now.
The Atlanta Falcons' first-round pick decided that keeping up with Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and Snapchat was too much of a distraction heading into his rookie season.
So, he canceled his accounts and removed the apps from his phone.
"Just had to go," McKinley said, standing at his locker before practice Wednesday. "I'm an Atlanta Falcon now. I'm a professional. I've just got to focus on football."
(AP Photo/John Bazemore)
The 21-year-old linebacker conceded that he's not sure what to do with all his free time. He was used to checking his Instagram account as soon as he got up each morning. Social media was a big part of his every day life.
"It's an adjustment," McKinley said. "I'm on my phone and there's nothing there."
He's looking for new ways to occupy himself.
"I'm trying to find some video games in the app store," he said, gazing forlornly at his device. "I've just got to scroll through my camera roll and find something to do."
(AP Photo/John Bazemore)
McKinley couldn't resist the chance to take a poke at some of the media _ all of them older _ gathered around him.
"I'm pretty sure none of you had social media growing up," he quipped. "I'm just trying to be like y'all."
Someone reacted with mock anger.
"Y'all barely had phones, cars, roads, any of that," McKinley shot back, all in good fun.
When asked if he'd ever seen or heard of a rotary dial phone, the rookie replied, "I don't know what you're talking about!"
How long will this media blackout last?
McKinley wavered a bit with that question.
"I could be back on it tomorrow," he said. "I don't know."