Vikings 53-man roster predictions following 2023 NFL Draft
By Adam Patrick
Wide Receivers (6)
- Justin Jefferson
- Jordan Addison (R)
- K.J. Osborn
- Jalen Nailor
- Malik Knowles (R)
- Thayer Thomas (R)
Justin Jefferson is likely going to sign a massive contract extension this year, and next season, rookie Jordan Addison should be able to help take some of the pressure off of Minnesota's superstar wide receiver.
K.J. Osborn has been a solid piece of the Vikings' passing attack for the last two seasons and that should continue in 2023. Jalen Nailor showed a few flashes as a rookie last season, and he should be able to get some additional opportunities to make plays during the 2023 campaign.
Instead of sticking with veterans Jalen Reagor and Brandon Powell, two undrafted rookies end up with the final two spots on Minnesota's wide receiver depth chart.
Measuring in at 6-foot-2 and 196 pounds, Malik Knowles caught 48 passes for 725 and two touchdowns at Kansas State last season. Knowles also returned a total of 43 kickoffs in his final two years at Kansas State, bringing two back for touchdowns and averaging 29.2 yards per return. He has the potential to unseat Kene Knwangu as the team's kick returner for next season.
With Reagor and Powell sent packing, former North Carolina State wide receiver Thayer Thomas will take over as Minnesota's punt returner in 2023. Thomas returned 70 punts in his five seasons at North Carolina State and he finished his college career with an average of 9.7 yards per punt return.