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Vikings sign XFL wide receiver Dontavian “Lucky” Jackson

The Vikings on Tuesday announced they have signed receiver Dontavian “Lucky” Jackson.

Minnesota cleared a roster spot on its 91-player maximum by waiving edge rusher Kenny Willekes.

Jackson joins the Vikings as a free agent who has played in The Spring League (2021), with the Edmonton Elks (2022) and the XFL’s D.C. Defenders (2023).

With the Defenders, Jackson totaled 36 catches for 572 yards and five touchdowns in 10 games.

He played college football at Western Kentucky, totaling 209 receptions for 2,680 yards and 13 touchdowns in 51 games with the Hilltoppers from 2016-19 after redshirting in 2015. His career catches rank second in school history, and his yardage total is third all-time.

Jackson capped his time at Western Kentucky with 94 catches (eighth in FBS that season) and 1,133 yards, which included a 16-catch game at Marshall and a 17-reception performance against Western Michigan to earn SERVPRO First Responder Bowl MVP honors.

He is a native of Lexington, Kentucky, and prepped at Lafayette High School.

Willekes first joined the Vikings in 2020 as a seventh-round pick out of Michigan State.

His rookie season ended before it had the chance to get going because of a leg injury he suffered during Minnesota’s training camp practice at U.S. Bank Stadium.

Willekes worked his way back and appeared in six games during the 2021 season, recording 18 tackles, 2.5 sacks, seven quarterback hits and a pass defensed.

He missed all of the 2022 season because of an injury suffered during the offseason.

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