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Vikings 2023 Undrafted Rookies Include 3 Receivers, 3 Corners & 3 Inside Linebackers

EAGAN, Minn. — The Vikings agreed to terms with 15 undrafted free agents after the 2023 NFL Draft concluded.

Minnesota was later allocated Junior Aho through the International Player Pathway Program.

That group of 16, along with the Vikings six-player draft class, will be scheduled to participate in rookie minicamp this weekend before joining veteran players in Minnesota's voluntary offseason program.

While we dived in on Minnesota's draft class, here is more information about each undrafted free agent, as well as Aho.

View photos of the 15 undrafted free agents the Vikings have agreed to terms with following the 2023 NFL Draft.


(Players are listed alphabetically by last name. Heights and weights are as listed on each player's or college bio page.)

OL Alan Ali, TCU

Position: Offensive Line | College: TCU (after SMU)

Height: 6-foot-4 | Weight: 301 pounds

Year: Redshirt Sr. | High school: Timber Creek (Fort Worth, Texas)

College career: 54 starts in 60 games played (39 of 45 at SMU from 2017-21 and 15 of 15 at TCU in 2022); four sacks allowed on 2,156 pass block snaps (according to Pro Football Focus)

Mostly in the middle: Ali started 43 games of his college career at center, including last season at TCU when he garnered First-Team All-Big 12 honors. At SMU, Ali also made starts at left tackle (two), left guard (six), right guard (two) and right tackle (one).

DT Calvin Avery, Illinois

Position: Defensive Tackle | College: Illinois

Height: 6-foot-1 | Weight: 343 pounds

Year: Senior | High school: Bishop Dunne (Dallas, Texas)

College career: 16 starts in 55 games from 2018-22; 75 tackles, 7.0 TFL, 2.5 sacks, 1 PBU, 1 FF, 2 blocked kicks

Have a pro day: Avery posted 31 reps in the bench press and demonstrated a vertical leap of 30 ½ inches at Illinois' Pro Day.

ILB Abraham Beauplan, Marshall

Position: Inside Linebacker | College: Marshall (after Navarro College in Texas)

Height: 6-foot-2 | Weight: 223 pounds

Year: Senior | High school: Boynton Beach (Florida)

College career: 35 games at Marshall from 2020-22; 231 tackles (80 solo), 23 TFL, 3.5 sacks, 1 INT, 3 PBU, 5 FF

In on the action: Beauplan recorded 67 assist tackles at Marshall in 2021, a total that ranked second in Conference USA and ninth in the NCAA.

OLB Andre Carter II, Army

Position: Outside Linebacker | College: Army

Height: 6-foot-6 ½ | Weight: 256 pounds

Year: Senior | High school: Cheshire Academy (Connecticut)*

College career: 25 starts in 33 games played at Army from 2020-22; 99 tackles (62 solo), 25.5 tackles for loss, 20 sacks, 2 INT, 5 PBU, 1 FR, 5 FF, 2 blocked kicks

Monster season: Carter ranked second in FBS in 2021 with a school-record 15.5 sacks (2.0 behind 2023 No. 3 overall pick Will Anderson, Jr.) and tied for 10th with four forced fumbles. PFF issued a pass rush grade of 93.4, which led all edge rushers that season.

* Carter began his high school career in California at Vista Murrieta High School as a receiver/tight end for two seasons. He transferred to Ridge Point High School in Missouri City, Texas, for his junior season before enrolling at Westbury Christian School in Houston. He followed that with a year of prep school at Cheshire Academy.

OL Jacky Chen, Pace

Position: Offensive Line | College: Pace

Height: 6-foot-5 | Weight: 302 pounds

Year: Redshirt Sr. | High school: Port Jefferson (New York)

College career: 27 starts in 30 games played from 2018-22; named First-Team All-Northeast-10 in 2022

Relatively new: Chen did not start playing football until his sophomore year of high school.

CB C.J. Coldon, Oklahoma

Position: Cornerback | College: Oklahoma (after Wyoming)

Height: 5-foot-11 | Weight: 185 pounds

Year: Redshirt Sr. | High school: Althoff Catholic (Belleville, Illinois)

College career: 23 starts in 37 games played from 2017-22 (19 of 25 at Wyoming from 2017-21 and 4 of 12 at Oklahoma in 2022); 160 tackles (108 solo), 8.5 TFL, 6 INT, 23 PBU, 2 FR

Impact transfer: In his lone season with the Sooners, Coldon led the team with four interceptions, which ranked 22nd nationally, on the way to earning an All-Big 12 Honorable Mention.

ILB Wilson Huber, Cincinnati

Position: Inside Linebacker | College: Cincinnati

Height: 6-foot-4 | Weight: 250 pounds

Year: Redshirt Sr. | High school: Franklin Central (Indianapolis)

College career: 13 starts in 62 games from 2017-22; 85 tackles (39 solo), 13 TFL, 5.0 sacks, 3 PBU, 4 blocked kicks

All around & All-Academic: Huber played offense, defense and special teams during his time with the Bearcats. He progressed from being a reserve on offense (2018) to becoming an ace on special teams and a backup linebacker (2021). He became a starting linebacker in 2022. Huber, who has undergrad and graduate finance degrees, was a 2022 Second-Team Academic All-American. He and his father Daryl (UC, 1985-88) are believed to be the first father-son football captains pair in program history.

WR Cephus Johnson, Southeastern Louisiana

Position: Receiver | College: Southeastern Louisiana (after South Alabama)

Height: 6-foot-5 | Weight: 220 pounds

Year: Senior | High school: Davidson (Mobile, Alabama)

College career: 90 of 180 passing for 1,020 yards with eight touchdowns and eight interceptions, 103 rushes for 235 yards and 4 TD at South Alabama from 2018-19; 124 of 195 passing for 1,449 yards with 11 touchdowns and five interceptions, 138 rushes for 797 yards and 8 TD, 3 receptions for 22 yards in 25 games at Southeastern Louisiana from 2020-22

Started close to home: Johnson's high school is about 10 minutes from the South Alabama campus.

WR Malik Knowles, Kansas State

Position: Receiver | College: Kansas State

Height: 6-foot-2 | Weight: 196 pounds

Year: Redshirt Sr. | High school: Lake Ridge (Mansfield, Texas)

College career: 40 starts in 51 games from 2018-22; 127 receptions for 1,867 yards (14.7 yards per catch) and 14 touchdowns; 36 rushes for 440 yards (12.2 yards per carry) and 4 TD; 61 kickoff returns for 1,691 yards (27.7 yards per return) and 3 TD

Top-flight returner: In 2021, Knowles was named First-Team All-Big 12 as a return specialist. He tied for second in FBS with two kickoff return touchdowns and ranked fourth with a kickoff return average of 33.1 yards.

ILB Ivan Pace, Jr., Cincinnati

Position: Inside Linebacker | College: Cincinnati (after Miami Ohio)

Height: 5-foot-10 ½ | Weight: 231 pounds

Year: Senior | High school: Colerain (Colerain Township, Ohio)

College career: 29 starts in 42 games played (16 of 29 at Miami Ohio and all 13 at Cincinnati); 307 tackles (142 solo), 42.5 TFL, 21 sacks, 1 INT, 9 PBU, 4 FF

Bearcat on the loose: Pace made quite the mark in his lone season at Cincinnati. He earned First-Team All-America honors from The Associated Press and was named American Athletic Conference Defensive Player of the Year after leading the league with 21.5 tackles for loss (third in FBS) and leading Cincinnati with 10 sacks and three forced fumbles. According to PFF, Pace led FBS linebackers with 46 pressures and 17 quarterback hits. The analytics site also said he allowed just one touchdown in 723 coverage snaps.

K Jack Podlesny, Georgia

Position: Kicker | College: Georgia

Height: 6-foot-0 | Weight: 194 pounds

Year: Redshirt Sr. | High school: Glynn Academy (Brunswick, Georgia)

College career: 40 games from 2018-22; 61-for-74 on field goals (82.4 percent) and 4-for-6 from 50 or more yards, long of 53, 365 total points, 182-of-184 on extra points (98.9 percent); 86 touchbacks on 134 kickoffs

Bided his time: Podlesny was a preferred walk-on in 2018 and then did not play in 2019 because he was behind Rodrigo Blankenship on the depth chart. In 2020, Podlesny went 3-for-3 on field goals from 50-plus yards, including a 53-yard game-winner in the Peach Bowl.

TE Ben Sims, Baylor

Position: Tight End | College: Baylor

Height: 6-foot-5 | Weight: 250 pounds

Year: Redshirt Sr. | High school: Clark (San Antonio, Texas)

College career: 30 starts in 42 games played from 2018-22; 78 receptions for 785 yards (10.1 yards per catch) and 12 touchdowns; 2 rushes for 2 yards and 2 TD

In Baylor's book: Among Baylor tight ends all-time, Sims set the record for career receiving touchdowns, ranks second for receptions and fourth in receiving yards. He also earned a spot on the Big 12 Commissioner's Honor Roll seven times.

WR Thayer Thomas, N.C. State

Position: Receiver | College: N.C. State

Height: 6-foot-0 | Weight: 198 pounds

Year: Senior | High school: Heritage (Wake Forest, North Carolina)

College career: 43 starts in 62 games played from 2018-22; 215 receptions for 2,484 yards (11.6 yards per catch) and 24 touchdowns 70 punt returns for 681 yards (9.7 yards per return) and 1 TD; ranks second in school history in career receptions and receiving touchdowns

Different draft: An outfielder on N.C. State's baseball team in 2019, Thomas was drafted by the Boston Red Sox in the 33rd round of the 2019 MLB Draft.

CB NaJee Thompson, Georgia Southern

Position: Cornerback | College: Georgia Southern

Height: 5-foot-11 | Weight: 205 pounds

Year: Redshirt Sr. | High school: Boiling Springs (South Carolina)

College career: 11 starts in 60 games played; 85 tackles (70 solo), 2 TFL, 2 INT, 14 PBU, 1 FF, 3 FF, 3 blocked kicks; 2 rushes for 14 yards (7.0 yards per carry); 11 receptions for 156 yards (14.2 yards per catch); 7 kickoff returns for 150 yards (21.4 yards per kick return); 2 punt returns for 40 yards (20.0 yards per punt return)

Twice is nice: Thompson won state track titles in the 200 and 400 meters and set the South Carolina record in the 200.

CB Jaylin Williams, Indiana

Position: Cornerback | College: Indiana

Height: 5-foot-10 | Weight: 195 pounds

Year: Senior | High school: Germantown (Tennessee)

College career: 31 starts in 54 games played from 2018-22; 152 tackles (117 solo); 6.5 TFL, 2.0 sacks, 6 INT, 24 PBU, 1 FR, 1 blocked kick

In the clutch: Williams' fumble recovery sealed Indiana's win over Illinois, and his blocked field goal occurred in overtime and helped the Hoosiers upend the Western Kentucky Hilltoppers.



Position: Outside Linebacker | College: SMU (after New Mexico Military Institute)

Height: 6-foot-4 | Weight: 272 pounds

Year: Redshirt Sr. | High school: Timber Creek (Fort Worth, Texas)

College career: 2 starts in 34 games played from 2020-22 at SMU; 44 tackles (25 solo), 7.5 TFL, 6.0 sacks, 2 FF

A native of Nice: Aho grew up in Nice, France, where he played for Dauphins De Nice. His football journey also included time with Aigles les Rouge, the Marseille Blue Starts and Seinäjoki Crocodiles of Finland in 2018.