Jay Ward happy to rejoin Daronte Jones, Jaquelin Roy with Vikings
Former LSU safety Jay Ward is heading up to the frigid north after he was taken by the Minnesota Vikings, who took him in the fourth round of the 2023 NFL draft on Saturday.
Ward won’t be alone in Minneapolis, though. When he arrives, he’ll be greeted by a pair of familiar faces. His selection pairs him up with his college teammate Jaquelin Roy, who was selected by the team just seven picks after Ward.
“I heard somebody say J-Roy just got picked, so to reunite with him, we’re back,” Ward told the media after the draft. “I played with him for three years. I know what he can bring to the table, and he definitely isn’t going to let you down. He’s a great player.”
The move also reunites him with his former defensive coordinator in Daronte Jones, who was hired by the Vikings as a defensive backs coach after one season in Baton Rouge. Things have now come full circle as Jones will serve as Ward’s position coach at the next level.
“First of all, I’d like to thank God for putting me in this position and thank [General Manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah] for taking a chance with me and reuniting me with Coach Jones,” Ward said. “This is a decision he won’t regret.
“I love Coach Jones. It’s always bigger than on the field with him, and we had a close relationship at LSU. We were tight. I’m glad I can reunite with him and he can keep molding me to be a better player.”
He’ll join a team that features veteran safety Harrison Smith, and he’ll be rejoining another former teammate from the 2019 squad in Justin Jefferson.
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