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5 Things to Know About Vikings 6th-Round Draft Pick Will Reichard

EAGAN, Minn. – The NCAA's all-time leading scorer is a Minnesota Viking.

Alabama kicker Will Reichard was drafted with the 203rd overall pick by Minnesota after shining during his career with the Crimson Tide.

Last season, Reichard made 22 of 25 (88 percent) field goals attempted, including a 5-for-5 showing from 50-plus yards and a long of 52. On 87 kickoffs, 52 resulted in touchbacks. He was perfect on 55 extra point attempts.

Reichard was named SEC Special Teams Player of the Year and earned Third-Team Associated Press All-America honors.

Vikings General Manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah told media members following the draft Reichard had been someone they'd identified early. Minnesota exercised patience before making Reichard the first of three kickers drafted in a small cluster (three from pick 203 to 212) Saturday.

"You're always nervous, there's a kicker run that's going to happen, and it doesn't matter if it's the fifth round, sixth round or seventh round – and we were lucky enough to start it this time," Adofo-Mensah said. "He's somebody with a great mentality. A really accurate kicker at the collegiate level. Obviously played in a lot of big games at one of the best schools doing it, so [we're] really excited to add him."

Here are five things to know about the Vikings new kicker:

  1. Played soccer first

Before Reichard hit the gridiron, he found a love on the soccer field.

At just 2 years old, he started playing soccer and excelled at it. But when his father felt he might need a little toughening up in the sport around 8 or 9 years old, Reichard signed up for the football team.

He recalled kicking trials, during which he was the only soccer player on the team.

"So I won the job," Reichard laughed while talking to Twin Cities media members virtually. "[But I] found out I really loved it and I just kind of stuck with it and have been training ever since."

  1. Hoover highlights

Reichard was ranked by ESPN as the nation's No. 1 kicker coming out of Hoover High School in Alabama.

During his time at Hoover, he made 27 of the 31 field goals he attempted and was perfect on 109 extra points. On 188 career kickoffs, he recorded a touchback on 186 of them.

Reichard was named to the Under Armour All-America Game as a senior and also participated in the 2018 Alabama-Mississippi All-Star Classic.

View photos of Alabama kicker Will Reichard who was selected No. 203 overall in the sixth round of the 2024 NFL Draft.

  1. Playing for his father

After Reichard makes a field goal, he points up to the sky.

The gesture honors his late father, Gary, who sadly passed away in 2016 – just one month after being diagnosed with pancreatic cancer.

"He was my first kicking coach," Reichard told *Sports Illustrated* in November. "I've had a lot of kicking coaches over the years, but he was the one always there training with me on the weekends and taking off work to take me to practice.

"He'd be proud," Reichard said. "This isn't somewhere I thought about playing when he was still here. But he would have loved it for sure. He would have eaten it all up."

  1. Night to Shine

Reichard participated in 2019 in "Night to Shine Prom," an annual event that provides an evening of celebration specifically for young people with developmental differences.

Originally started by former NFL quarterback Tim Tebow, "Night to Shine" has been adopted by schools and churches all over the world.

  1. (Somewhat) newlywed

Reichard and his wife Amelia tied the knot on Jan. 21, 2023, almost exactly a year after popping the question.