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Vikings’ KJ Osborn speaks about helping save man from burning car

On Wednesday morning, Osborn spoke to the media via Zoom about his three minute "crazy experience" on the side of a Texas road.

AUSTIN, Texas — Minnesota Vikings wide receiver K.J. Osborn spoke to the media on Wednesday morning about helping save a man's life from a burning car on the side of a Texas road.

Osborn was riding in an Uber around 2:30 a.m. Monday in Austin, Texas, when the Uber driver spotted a burning car underneath a freeway overpass and pulled over.

Osborn, the Uber driver and two other bystanders pulled the man out of the car.

On Wednesday morning, Osborn spoke to the media via Zoom about his "crazy experience."

When asked about his first reaction to seeing the burning car Osborn said "you see this stuff in movies or video games and TV, but it's different when it's real flames in front of you."

"Initially I wanted to be this hero and go help save this guy... but the closer I get my mom is in my head and my family and I'm like, 'I'm risking a lot here.' But my Uber driver Abdul, he went right up to the car, he opened the passenger door, he's talking to the guy, 'Are you alive,' 'Are you OK,' asking if he's alive," Osborn said.

"Initially, I think, looking back, that kind of motivated me to be like, 'we've got to save this guy.'"

The native of Ypsilanti, Michigan repeatedly wanted reporters to know that the story wasn't about him and that he had a lot of help.

Osborn said his Uber driver, Abdul, and the two bystanders, Rita and Arthur, were just happy to get the man out of the car and that the firefighters were able to extinguish the fire before the vehicle exploded.

"We were the only option," Osborn said. "I didn't see the crash or hear it because my head was down and I was on my phone. When I looked up there was nobody on the street... but Abdul stopped and Rita and Arthur had stopped right behind us," Osborn said.

Osborn said he was able to track down the identity of the man in the car after learning they had some close mutual friends.

"I found him last night through mutual friends. I am still waiting to hear how he's doing. I still haven't spoken to him, but I do know who he is," Osborn said.

As it has been reported in many stories about this rescue, Osborn said he was in the "right place at the right time" but the brief moments on that highway were still scary.

"Definitely it felt way longer than three minutes, definitely. When you see that fire, just the flames. Even in the picture, it doesn't even give the whole realization of what was going on. The flames are bursting and there's tires popping. That kind of startled all of us."

Osborn is working on finishing his master's degree in criminal justice at Miami this offseason.

"I wanted to be in the FBI or Secret Service. Ironically, these were the acts I wanted to try to aim to be my profession outside of the NFL… I don't think it has changed me as a person, but I can say that the experience inspired me to continue to inspire others and be a leader and role model."

"Definitely a crazy experience. Right place, right time. It wasn't just me," Osborn said.

Osborn was a fifth-round draft pick by the Vikings in 2020 out of Miami, where he finished his college career after transferring from Buffalo. He played sparingly as a rookie before flourishing as the No. 3 wide receiver in Minnesota's offense, totaling 110 receptions for 1,305 yards and 12 touchdowns over the last two seasons.

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