Notable Receiver Returns to Vikings Practice Squad

Prominent WR Unlikely
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The Minnesota Vikings formed a 53-man roster and a 16-man practice squad for the 2023 season that kicks off on Sunday with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers coming to the state of Minnesota. Baker Mayfield took over for Tom Brady, so folks are interested to see if they are a serious football team or just a possible candidate to draft a new passer early in 2024.

Notable Receiver Returns to Vikings Practice Squad

Notable Receiver Returns to Vikings Practice Squad
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Many Super Bowl-winning players from 2020 are still on the roster. Someone who wasn’t with the Vikings for a while is N’Keal Harry, but the wideout was signed to the practice squad while interior lineman Alan Ali was released to make room for him, the team announced.

Harry was signed during training camp and played in the first preseason contest before suffering a minor injury. That kept him out of the second game, and some folks thought he may have already clinched a roster spot before knowing about the issue. Because he wasn’t healthy for the final game, the Vikings released him and signed someone who was.

A couple of weeks later, he is back in Minnesota and attempts to get a second chance with the organization. Harry logged two catches for 24 yards in the preseason.

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The most notable aspect of Harry’s career is his status as a former first-round pick, ahead of some players who had some excellent careers.

Harry was a massive disappointment for the Patriots. He was the 32nd pick of the 2019 draft. Four picks later, the 49ers selected star receiver Deebo Samuel. He’s not the only great pass catcher picked in the round after Harry, as both Ole Miss stars A.J. Brown and DK Metcalf heard their names called. Dionte Johnson went early in the third round to the Pittsburgh Steelers.

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Prior to last season, the Patriots shipped him to the Chicago Bears in the NFC North for a seventh-rounder, but he didn’t make a significant impact. In 40 career games through four seasons and two teams, Harry caught 64 passes for 714 yards and 5 touchdowns. He also rushed for 49 yards on 5 attempts as a rookie.

Harry played at Arizona State in college and recorded 1,000-yard seasons in his final two campaigns. He also scored 17 touchdowns combined in those two seasons.

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The 25-year-old was always a longshot to make the 53-man roster with the Vikes as a late arrival, but he has shown some talent as a contested-catch target and potential red zone asset. Receiver is one of the strongest positions on the team, but in case of an injury, Harry could be an option to be called up to the gameday roster. He provides a different skill set than the other guys in the receiving room at 6’4″ and 225 lbs.

The Vikings currently employ five wideouts on the 53-man roster. Justin Jefferson lost his sidekick Adam Thielen, but K.J. Osborn wants to take over his role, and rookie Jordan Addison has turned heads throughout his short tenure with the Vikings. Behind those three, Kevin O’Connell can plan with sophomore Jalen Nailor, who had a phenomenal first day of training camp followed by a lengthy absence, and punt returner Brandon Powell.

Janik Eckardt is a football fan who likes numbers and stats. The Vikings became his favorite team despite their quarterback at the time, Christian Ponder. He is a walking soccer encyclopedia, loves watching sitcoms, and Classic rock is his music genre of choice. Follow him on Twitter if you like the Vikings: @JanikEckardt