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5 Things to Know About Vikings New WR Jalen 'Speedy' Nailor

EAGAN, Minn. – The Vikings selected Michigan State receiver Jalen 'Speedy' Nailor in the sixth round with the 191st overall pick of the 2022 NFL Draft.

Nailor was the third consecutive player drafted by Minnesota from a Big Ten school, joining former Gophers defensive lineman Esezi Otomewo and Illini tackle Vederian Lowe.

Here are five things to know about Nailor:

1. What happened in Vegas?

The hosting of this year's draft by Las Vegas brought things full-circle for Nailor, who was there for the weekend of the draft.

The native of Palmdale, California, headed about 240 miles northeast to Las Vegas and joined powerhouse Bishop Gorman as a sophomore.

Nailor helped the Gaels win the state football title in each of his three seasons and finish No. 1 in USA TODAY's Super 25 rankings. He totaled 108 receptions for 1,995 yards and 28 touchdown catches for Bishop Gorman.

The prep teams that Nailor played for went 15-0, 15-0 and 13-2.

2. Speed racer

Nailor picked up his nickname while at Bishop Gorman.

Beyond the gridiron, Nailor showcased his speed in track. He won four state titles, including as an individual in the 100 and 200 meters and as a member of the school's 400- and 800-meter relay teams. That performance helped Bishop Gorman secure its first team track state championship.

Nailor ran the 40-yard dash in 4.5 seconds at the 2022 NFL Scouting Combine, which ranked 19th among this year's receivers, but his impact goes beyond straight-line speed.

The seamless fluidity Nailor has shown multiple times at multiple levels has made him incredibly effective on double moves.

View photos of Michigan State WR Jalen Nailor who was selected No. 191 overall in the sixth round of the 2022 NFL Draft.

3. Landing in East Lansing

Nailor initially planned to enroll at Arizona State, but a coaching change there prompted him to seek another option.

He landed with the Spartans in East Lansing, Michigan, and made a big impact.

Nailor finished his career at Michigan State with 86 receptions for 1,454 yards and 12 touchdowns in 28 career games from 2018-21, despite missing time in multiple seasons because of injuries.

When he was able to suit up for the Spartans last season, the team went 9-0 thanks to career highs of 37 receptions, 695 yards and six touchdowns. He ranked second in the Big Ten by averaging 18.8 yards per catch and earned Honorable Mention All-Big Ten honors from media in 2021.

Nailor finished his college career with 1,844 all-purpose yards, adding 179 on kick returns, 163 on rushes and 48 on punt returns to his receiving tally.

After starting the first eight games of 2021 and missing the next four because of a hand injury, Nailor returned to help Michigan State defeat Pittsburgh in the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl with six catches for 108 yards, highlighted by a one-handed catch that gained 50 yards.

4. Standing out at Rutgers

Nailor's biggest stats in one game occurred on Oct. 11, 2021, when he totaled a career-best 221 yards and tied a school record he had already matched with three scores on just five total catches.

The yardage is the most by a visiting player in a game at Rutgers, topping 207 by Larry Fitzgerald while with Pittsburgh in 2003.

The scores were "Mossian vs. Dallas on Thanksgiving," with Nailor popping touchdowns of 63, 63 and 65 yards to help the Spartans build a 21-13 lead at halftime.

He became the first Big Ten player to record more than 220 receiving yards and at least three scores since Illinois' A.J. Jenkins against Northwester in 2011.

5. Spartan spirit

Nailor is the third former Michigan State player currently on Minnesota's roster, joining quarterback Kirk Cousins and defensive end Kenny Willekes, who was picked in the seventh round in 2020 and debuted last fall.

Nailor and Willekes were teammates for two seasons at Michigan State (2018-19), and they talked briefly after Nailor became the ninth former Spartan ever selected by the Vikings in an NFL Draft and third since 2015 (Trae Waynes).

He is also the third former receiver drafted from the school by Minnesota, joining Gene Washington (No. 8 overall in 1967) and Mike Hurd (picked 336th overall in 1975). Washington totaled 172 receptions for 3,087 yards and 23 touchdowns in six seasons, making two Pro Bowls along the way. Hurd did not make the team.