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Alex Felkins Hoping For Shot At NFL Ahead Of Draft

Alex Felkins wasn’t even supposed to start.

The starting placekicker job for Penn State football belonged to Sander Sahaydak. However, by the end of the Nittany Lions’ first game of the season, Sahaydak gave up his spot to Felkins.

Felkins was still new to Penn State’s squad, brought in from Columbia via the transfer portal to create a position after the departure of Jake Pinegar, whose NCAA eligibility had run out. A year after coming to Happy Valley, Felkins is trying to leave with a spot on an NFL roster.

Felkins was a top kicking prospect in high school, rated as the No. 5 kicker in his class by Chris Sailer Kicking. A native of Tulsa, Oklahoma, Felkins committed to Columbia based on the Ivy League school’s academic opportunities.

After four years with the Lions, Felkins finished as one of the program’s best-ever placekickers despite not playing during the 2020 season due to the COVID-19 pandemic. During his three seasons on the field at Columbia, Felkins knocked down 36 field goals and 75 extra points, totaling 183 points for the most in school history by a placekicker.

Felkins owned a number of other records when he left Columbia. The three-time All-Ivy League honoree was second in school history for made field goals, first in extra points, and first in 50+ yard field goals. Felkins was also one of two kickers in Ivy League history to knock down three kicks from 50+ yards.

After playing at Columbia for academic reasons, Felkins transferred to Penn State simply to play football. He got his chance, finishing 19-of-24 on field goals and not missing one of his 47 extra-point attempts. He finished second in the Big Ten in field goals and scoring while finishing fourth in the conference for field goal percentage.

It’ll be a long shot for Felkins to reach the NFL. There are only a few kickers given a shot at an NFL roster each year, and Felkins isn’t considered a top prospect. He hasn’t had his kicking broken down by top analysts and, while he’s spoken to a few NFL teams, doesn’t seem to be in a position to earn an NFL contract.

The senior finished 46th in the nation in field goal percentage (79.2%) and 18th in the nation for field goal makes per game (1.5). With more than a dozen seniors rated ahead of him in both categories, Felkins’ NFL prospects look dim.

The first round of the 2024 NFL Draft will begin at 8 p.m. on Thursday, April 25, with the last round ending on Saturday, April 27. Every round will be televised on ESPN and NFL Network.

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About the Author

Joe Lister

Joe is a junior journalism major at Penn State and Onward State's managing editor. He covers Penn State football, among other Penn State sports. He also listens to Mac Miller more than you. If you want to find him, Joe's usually watching soccer with his shirt off or at the gym with his shirt on. For dumb stuff, follow him on Twitter (iamjoelister). For serious stuff, email him ([email protected]).

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