• May 6, 2019

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Jesper Horsted’s next reception will be with the Chicago Bears.

Horsted made his NFL destination official Monday, as he signed a free agent contract with the Bears. He joins teammates Stephen Carlson (Cleveland) and John Lovett (Kansas City) as Princeton seniors who will heading to the next level.

“I’m thrilled for Jesper to get this opportunity,” says Princeton’s Charles W. Caldwell Jr. head coach of football Bob Surace. “He has to work for all of his accomplishments, and the challenge of making this historic franchise is no different. He’s had a great career here, and he will be a great representative of Princeton football and Princeton University as he heads to the NFL.”

The 6-4, 225-pound senior from Shoreview, Minn., caught 196 passes as a Princeton Tiger, and no other receiver in program history has ever had more. Horsted had a strong showing during practice and in the East-West Shrine Game, where he caught two passes for 42 yards, including one of 38 yards that was the longest catch of the game by any player.

In addition to the Princeton record for career receptions, Horsted also caught more touchdown passes than any player in program history with 28, including 14 as a junior, when his 92 receptions set a Princeton single-season record, and 13 more this past year. Horsted, who also had two career rushing touchdowns, was a two-time first-team All-Ivy League selection and a Bushnell Cup finalist for Ivy Offensive Player of the Year last fall, when Lovett won the award for the second time.

Princeton went 10-0 in 2018 for its first perfect season in 54 years while producing the highest-scoring offense in Ivy history at 47.0 points per game. Horsted finished the season with 72 catches for 1,047 yards and ranked in the top 10 in the country in touchdown catches and receptions per game. His seven straight games with at least 100 receiving yards spanning 2017 and 2018 are also the Ivy League record.

For all of his numbers, he also made what were possibly the two biggest plays of the year with amazing receptions on a 91-yard drive against Dartmouth in Princeton’s 14-9 win over a Big Green team that finished 9-1. That 91-yard drive completely changed the complexion of the game and led to the winning Princeton TD on the next drive; without Horsted’s two catches, it would have been a much different game.

Horsted had double figures in receptions twice last year and at least five catches in nine of 10 games, including nine in that Dartmouth game for 88 yards.

In addition to his football career Horsted was also a first-team All-Ivy baseball player and a started on an Ivy League champion and NCAA tournament baseball team.

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