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Vikings Get a Velocity Infusion as Receiver Returns to Follow

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Vikings Get a Velocity Infusion as Receiver Returns to Follow

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Nicknamed Speedy, Jalen Nailor has the potential to play a important function in Kevin O’Connell’s offense. The Vikings get a lift when he’s within the lineup.

Justin Jefferson goes to proceed demanding the lion’s share of targets as he scorches defenses regularly. In the meantime, Okay.J. Osborn has proven himself to be a lot able to working off of #18 and Jordan Addison has the potential to develop right into a shifty chain-mover. Nailor, although, figures to have a really particular job: take the highest off of defenses.

Sadly, Nailor has been struggling to do this not too long ago since he has been therapeutic from an harm, however the staff acquired some excellent news on that entrance. A latest replace from Alec Lewis means that Nailor was on the observe subject to get in some work with the Vikings.

Vikings Get a Velocity Infusion: Jalen Nailor

Nailor joined the Vikings as a Sixth-round choice. Popping out of Michigan State, Nailor had developed a popularity as somebody able to profitable deep.

Jan 1, 2023; Inexperienced Bay, Wisconsin, USA; Minnesota Vikings huge receiver Jalen Nailor (83) rushes for a landing as Inexperienced Bay Packers cornerback Corey Ballentine (35) defends throughout the fourth quarter at Lambeau Subject. Obligatory Credit score: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports activities

In the course of the 2021 season, Nailor averaged 18.8 yards per reception (an eye-popping quantity). His 37 catches was 695 yards and 6 touchdowns. So, not excessive utilization however tremendous explosive. The 12 months prior, he turned 26 catches into 515 yards and 4 touchdowns. The 2020 yards-per-reception common sat at a really spectacular 19.8.

As a rookie, Nailor didn’t get too many alternatives. Working inside an offense that boasts Jefferson, Adam Thielen, Osborn, T.J. Hockenson, and Dalvin Prepare dinner means it’s robust to get targets. However, he did do some good issues in restricted alternatives. By the top of the 12 months, Nailor had picked up 9 catches for 179 yards and a TD. The 19.9 yards-per-reception common is strictly what the Vikings are searching for with Nailor. A complete of seven of his 9 catches went for first downs.

Jalen Nailor Stock Continues to Rise
Nov 24, 2022; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Vikings huge receiver Jalen Nailor (83) celebrates after making a cease towards the New England Patriots throughout the fourth quarter at U.S. Financial institution Stadium. Obligatory Credit score: Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports activities

Fortunately, he seems to be making progress in his restoration. Alec Lewis of The Athletic handed alongside the word: “Vikings WR Jalen Nailor is again in uniform at this time working out to the sphere along with his helmet. First time in weeks. Had been nursing leg harm.”

In truth, it’s laborious to understand how severe the harm has been. The Vikings are typically fairly cautious throughout the offseason however Nailor has missed a good bit of time, so the problem couldn’t have been completely minuscule. Regardless, the vital factor is that the staff is seeing significant progress because the roster trim down date — August twenty ninth — approaches.

Aug 14, 2022; Paradise, Nevada, USA; Minnesota Vikings huge receiver Jalen Nailor (83) drops the ball throughout a kick off return towards the Las Vegas Raiders throughout a preseason sport at Allegiant Stadium. Obligatory Credit score: Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports activities

Optimism is excessive for Jalen Nailor. Josh Frey sees him as “an explosive playmaker” able to making “performs down the sphere.” Whereas warning is usually finest for late-round sophomores, Frey is onto one thing. Nailor actually does supply a pile of potential, particularly in a Vikings offense that might profit from somebody able to leaving corners within the mud. Don’t count on a WR1 however a productive WR3/4 could be very doable.

Minnesota will observe towards the Cardinals this week earlier than enjoying their last preseason sport on Saturday, August twenty sixth.

Afterwards, Kevin O’Connell has the unenviable job of sifting by means of a ton of receiver expertise on the best way right down to the 53-man roster. Count on to see the second-year receiver on the ultimate roster. He ought to contribute to particular groups for Matt Daniels whereas choosing up a goal or two on offense.

Editor’s Notice: Info from Pro Football Reference and Sports Reference CFB helped with this piece.



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