Jalen Nailor picked as surprise standout in offseason practices

Jordy McElroy
Vikings Wire

Minnesota Vikings rookie receiver Jalen Nailor could do more than just make the team.

If the early practices are any indication of what he’ll look like in training camp, the sixth-round draft pick out of Michigan State could contribute in 2022.

The Voice of the Vikings, Paul Allen, was recently asked to pick a surprise standout from the spring practices. He went with the 23-year-old newcomer attempting to land a spot at one of the most crowded positions on the roster.

Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Jalen Nailor takes part in drills at the NFL football team's practice facility in Eagan, Minn., Wednesday, June 8, 2022. (AP Photo/Bruce Kluckhohn)

"For me, it would be wide receiver Jalen Nailor," Allen said. "From where he was taken as deep in the draft and from what I saw at rookie camp and a little bit at minicamp, man, Jalen’s tough. He’s going to make the team, and I think he’s going to contribute."

Nailor isn’t a player that’s going to wow with lightning speed or a ridiculous catch radius, but he is someone that’ll put his body on the line and make the tough plays to win football games.

He’s a willing blocker on the field that never shies away from contact whether it’s with the ball in his hands or not. That kind of toughness and willingness to compete regardless of the job responsibility isn’t something that can be taught.

And it could be what ultimately carves out a spot for him in one of the NFL’s deepest receiving groups.