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Vikings Claim TE Ben Ellefson & Sign 14 to Practice Squad


EAGAN, Minn. — The Minnesota Vikings on Wednesday announced they have claimed tight end Ben Ellefson off waivers.

In order to make room for Ellefson, a native of Hawley, Minnesota, the Vikings waived defensive end Jalyn Holmes.

Ellefson joined Jacksonville in 2020 as an undrafted rookie out of North Dakota State. He played in seven games last year, catching one pass for 10 yards against the Pittsburgh Steelers in Week 6.

View photos of Vikings TE Ben Ellefson who recently joined the team.

A member of the Minnesota Vikings High School All-State Team, Ellefson was part of five conference championships and four FCS national championships with Bison teams during his five years with the program. He finished his college career with 35 receptions, 463 receiving yards and 16 touchdowns. His touchdowns are the most by a tight end in NDSU history and rank ninth on the school's all-time career list.

During Ellefson's senior season in 2019, he was an American Football Coaches Association All-America Second Team selection after catching 15 passes for 199 yards and five scores. Ellefson's high school, Hawley High School, is located roughly 30 minutes away from Adam Thielen's high school, Detroit Lakes High School.

Minnesota also announced it has signed the following 14 players to its practice squad:

RB Ameer Abdullah

T Zack Bailey

FB Jake Bargas

LB Tuf Borland

TE Zach Davidson

S Myles Dorn

G Dakota Dozier

G Kyle Hinton

WR Myron Mitchell

CB Parry Nickerson

WR Whop Philyor

RB A.J. Rose, Jr.

CB Tye Smith

DE Kenny Willekes

The Vikings have two more available spots on their practice squad because the NFL expanded those limits to 16 players.

"I think it helps a lot. And really for these players, too, to have 16 practice squad guys it helps a lot that way," Vikings Head Coach Mike Zimmer said Wednesday. "It helps to take some of the reps off of some of the other guys. Then being able to flex guys on game days is important. I wish it was more than just two times. It's a start."