Vikings Place Young WR on IR

Jan 1, 2023; Green Bay, Wisconsin, USA; Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Jalen Nailor (83) rushes for a touchdown as Green Bay Packers cornerback Corey Ballentine (35) defends during the fourth quarter at Lambeau Field. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

On Wednesday, the Minnesota Vikings swung a trade to bring in RB Cam Akers in an attempt to revive their rushing offense heading into Week 3.

In order to place Akers on the 53-man roster, the Vikings needed to create a spot by either releasing a player or placing one on injured reserve.

The Vikings announced on Thursday afternoon that Akers had passed his physical, thus completing the trade with the Rams, and Minnesota placed young WR Jalen Nailor on IR to free up a roster spot.

Vikings Place Young WR Jalen Nailor on IR

Dec 17, 2022; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Indianapolis Colts safety Trevor Denbow (43) breaks up a fake punt pass attempt to Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Jalen Nailor (83) during the second quarter at U.S. Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

The Vikings made the announcement via X (formerly Twitter), posting, “RB Cam Akers has passed his physical to complete the trade with the Rams. WR Jalen Nailor has been placed on IR.”

Nailor was selected in the sixth-round of the 2022 NFL Draft after a strong collegiate career at Michigan State. Over his four-year career with the Spartans, he put together 86 receptions for 1454 yards and 17 TDs.

Dec 30, 2021; Atlanta, GA, USA; Michigan State Spartans quarterback Payton Thorne (10) and wide receiver Jalen Nailor (8) celebrate after a two-point conversion against the Pittsburgh Panthers in the second half during the 2021 Peach Bowl at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

During his rookie season with the Vikings, Nailor saw very limited usage with the offense. He was targeted just 13 times over the course of the season but caught nine of them for 179 yards and a touchdown. During the final two weeks of the season, Nailor had seven of those receptions for 151 yards and caught the touchdown in Week 17 against the Packers.

This year, Nailor is yet to catch a pass for the Vikings and has seen just one snap with the offense. However, he has been an impact player on special teams, seeing the field for 35 snaps with the group and recording a tackle in Week 1 against the Buccaneers.

Young WR
Nov 24, 2022; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Jalen Nailor (83) celebrates after making a stop against the New England Patriots during the fourth quarter at U.S. Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports

Nailor popped up on the Wednesday injury report with a hamstring issue, but he was a limited participant, making it seem as if the injury wasn’t super serious. However, it evidently was problematic enough for the Vikings to justify giving him four weeks off for recovery.

Now, the wide receiver cannot be activated until Week 7 when the Vikings take on the San Francisco 49ers on Monday, October 23rd. Hopefully, by then Minnesota will have strung a few wins together in order to get back into the playoff hunt.

Josh Frey is a Class of 2020 graduate of The College of Idaho and managing editor of When he’s not writing about the NFL, Josh enjoys running, gaming, or rooting for the Milwaukee Brewers and Bucks. Check out his Twitter account: @Freyed_Chicken.

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