Justin Jefferson

Minnesota Vikings
Wide Receiver #18
Minnesota Vikings
Wide Receiver #18

Justin Jefferson News

Rested during second half

Jefferson caught four of five targets for 38 yards in Sunday's 29-13 win over the Bears.

Analysis: Jefferson's production came exclusively during the first half, as Minnesota opted to rest its offensive starters following halftime. The decision restricted Jefferson to his second straight game with under 40 receiving yards, a steep decline from his league-leading production. With the Vikings slated to host a playoff game, however, Jefferson should be operating at full capacity the next time he takes the field.

Jan 8, 2023 1:29 PM EST

May not play full game

Head coach Kevin O'Connell intimated Friday that Jefferson and other key starters on offense and defense may not play the entirety of the Vikings' Week 18 game in Chicago, Joe Nelson of SI.com reports. "We've got a pretty clear cut plan with how we want to go about the whole game, but we're going to go in with the expectation of our guys going and try to get off to a good start and play good football," O'Connell said.

Analysis: Minnesota is assured no worse than the No. 3 seed in the NFC playoffs regardless of how this weekend's games transpire, but since the Vikings will need a win over the Bears plus a Cardinals win over the heavily-favored 49ers to climb to the No. 2 seed, O'Connell may not have much incentive to expose key players to an injury heading into the wild-card round. While Jefferson and all of the Vikings' other starting skill-position players look poised to play at least one series, the uncertainty of whether they'll play much beyond that makes it tough to reliably project any in Week 18 season-long or DFS lineups.

Jan 6, 2023 3:11 PM EST

Just one catch Sunday

Jefferson caught one of five targets for 15 yards in Sunday's 41-17 loss to the Packers.

Analysis: It was a brutal showing for Jefferson, one that likely cost him a chance to break Calvin Johnson's NFL record for receiving yards in a season, but the whole Vikings offense struggled after losing two offensive linemen to injuries early in the game. The team might prioritize the health of its stars in a relatively meaningless regular-season finale, so Jefferson may not see much of the field in Week 18 against the Bears.

Jan 1, 2023 8:55 PM EST

Tops 100 yards again

Jefferson caught 12 of 16 targets for 133 yards and a touchdown in Saturday's 27-24 win over the Giants.

Analysis: It was another huge day for the NFL's receiving yards leader, as Jefferson reached triple digits for the 10th time this season while scoring his eighth TD. The third-year wideout is now 208 yards short of Calvin Johnson's all-time single-season record of 1,964 heading into a Week 17 road game against the Packers -- a defense he lit up for 184 yards and two touchdowns back in Week 1.

Dec 24, 2022 4:50 PM EST

No limitations in practice

Jefferson (ribs/chest) wasn't listed on Tuesday's injury report, Alec Lewis of The Athletic reports.

Analysis: After Saturday's 39-36 win versus the Colts, coach Kevin O'Connell relayed that Jefferson suffered a "rib chest contusion" during the contest. On Monday, O'Connell noted to Ben Goessling of the Minneapolis Star Tribune an expectation that Jefferson would be able to practice all week ahead of Saturday's game against the Giants. With no limitations at all to kick off Week 16 prep, Jefferson appears set to resume his standing as the Vikings' top wide receiver.

Dec 20, 2022 1:45 PM EST

No injury concerns

Coach Kevin O'Connell said Monday that he expects Jefferson (ribs/chest) to practice throughout the week as the Vikings prepare to face the Giants on Saturday, Ben Goessling of the Star Tribune reports.

Analysis: Jefferson got banged up in Saturday's win over the Colts but continued playing after being checked out on the sideline. The star wide receiver isn't in danger of sitting out Saturday's game due to this latest bruise, but defenses will likely continue to play physically against Jefferson moving forward.

Dec 19, 2022 11:09 AM EST

Suffers chest contusion

Coach Kevin O'Connell said Jefferson sustained a "rib chest contusion" during Saturday's 39-36 overtime win against the Colts, but the wide receiver is "feeling pretty good," Chris Tomasson of the St. Paul Pioneer Press reports.

Analysis: The injury stems from catch in the second quarter in which Jefferson stayed on the turf for a spell before walking to the sideline under his own power. After getting checked out by the team's medical staff, he returned to action. At one point during the Vikings' second-half comeback, referees sent him to the sideline again to be evaluated for a head injury after taking a huge hit from the Colts' Stephon Gilmore, but Jefferson was able to reenter the game after that incident, too. Overall, Jefferson put up 12 catches (on 16 targets) for 123 yards and one touchdown by the time Greg Joseph's game-winning field goal split the uprights. With a health concern in tow, though, Jefferson's status will be one to watch in advance of next Saturday's contest against the Giants.

Dec 17, 2022 2:52 PM EST

Prolific in historic win

Jefferson caught 12 of 16 targets for 123 yards and a touchdown in Saturday's 39-36 overtime win over the Colts.

Analysis: Jefferson stayed down after a second-quarter catch attempt but walked off the field under his own power, per Kevin Seifert of ESPN, and soon returned to the game after being checked out for a chest injury. The Vikings failed in every phase of the game en route to a 33-0 halftime deficit, but Jefferson contributed to their historic comeback with an eight-yard touchdown catch early in the fourth quarter. He went into the blue medical tent later in the fourth to be evaluated for a concussion but returned again and went on to notch his ninth 100-yard performance of the season. Jefferson needs 10 yards in Week 16 against the Giants to break Randy Moss's single-season Vikings record.

Dec 17, 2022 2:13 PM EST

Jaw-dropping numbers in loss

Jefferson secured 11 of 15 targets for 223 yards in the Vikings' 34-23 loss to the Lions on Sunday.

Analysis: Jefferson comfortably led the Vikings in receptions, receiving yards and targets on the afternoon, with the fact Minnesota had to go pass-heavy as the game went on naturally benefitting the star receiver. Jefferson logged a team-long 47-yard catch along the way, and he's now just grab away from his second straight 100-yard reception campaign. Jefferson's first opportunity to build on his season-best yardage tally comes in a Saturday afternoon home matchup against the Colts in Week 15.

Dec 11, 2022 2:34 PM EST

Scores sixth touchdown

Jefferson recorded seven receptions on 11 targets for 45 yards and a touchdown in Sunday's 27-22 win over the Jets. He also chipped in two rushes for 11 yards.

Analysis: Jefferson was bottled up by the strong Jets' secondary for much of the day and held him to under 50 receiving yards for the fourth time this season. However, he managed a 10-yard touchdown reception midway through the fourth quarter to tally his sixth score of the campaign. Despite the relatively down performance, Jefferson continues to command targets at a tremendous rate, giving him an extremely safe floor.

Dec 4, 2022 2:03 PM EST

Bounces back in Week 12 win

Jefferson secured nine of 11 targets for 139 yards and a touchdown in the Vikings' 33-26 win over the Patriots on Thursday night.

Analysis: Jefferson shared the team lead in receptions with Adam Thielen and paced the Vikings in yardage and targets. The star wideout's performance, which also included a six-yard touchdown reception with 10:40 remaining in the first quarter, was a major resurgence from his three-catch, 33-yard tally in the Week 11 blowout loss to Dallas. Jefferson has now eclipsed the century mark in three of the last four games and six of his last eight contests overall, a torrid stretch he'll aim to extend in a Week 13 home matchup against the stingy Jets defense a week from Sunday.

Nov 24, 2022 8:41 PM EST

Bottled up in blowout loss

Jefferson (toe) was held to 33 yards on three receptions (five targets) in Sunday's 40-3 blowout loss to Dallas.

Analysis: Jefferson entered the game hobbled due to a minor bout with turf toe, but he didn't appear to be limited while running routes Sunday. That's where the good news ends for fantasy managers, as the superstar wideout was shut down by the Cowboys' premier pass defense. Kirk Cousins (12/23 for 105 yards) had no time to throw in the pocket, effectively disrupting Jefferson's ability to develop routes downfield against coverage shaded his way. The 23-year-old was averaging 135.7 yards per game over his previous six contests, so better days will be ahead after a forgettable Week 11. Jefferson and the Vikings will have to regroup quickly with short turnaround ahead of Thursday's tilt against the Patriots.

Nov 20, 2022 6:02 PM EST

Playing through pain

Jefferson will be playing through some pain due to his case of a 'mild' turf toe injury, Fox's Jay Glazer reported on their morning pregame show.

Analysis: Jefferson remains clear of the injury list and the phrase 'no limitations' was used earlier in describing his status, but just be aware that those two facts doesn't necessarily mean that he's fully healed either. It probably doesn't change your decision-making with him, but it's worth noting that distinction.

Nov 20, 2022 9:58 AM EST

No limitations expected Week 11

Jefferson, whose practice participation was managed this week while he contends with a mild case of turf toe, said he doesn't expect to face any restrictions due to the injury in Sunday's game against the Cowboys, Tom Pelissero of NFL Network reports.

Analysis: Jefferson said he picked up the injury in last week's overtime win over the Bills, but it didn't prevent him from making a highlight-reel, one-handed reception to convert a key fourth down late in the fourth quarter on his way to finishing with a career-high 193 receiving yards. Though Jefferson's reps were capped in practice Wednesday and Thursday account of the sprained toe, the fact that he upgraded to full participation Friday and doesn't carry a designation into Sunday's game supports the notion that he nor the Vikings are too concerned about the injury. Jefferson may be a riskier investment in DFS contests than usual if he's operating at less than 100 percent, but fantasy managers in season-long leagues should have no qualms about keeping him active this week.

Nov 20, 2022 5:17 AM EST

Cleared to play

Jefferson (toe) doesn't have an injury designation for Sunday's game against the Cowboys.

Analysis: A toe injury impacted his practice participation but never caused him to miss a session entirely, and Jefferson now takes the field against a Cowboys defense led by CB Trevon Diggs and pass rushers Micah Parsons and DeMarcus Lawrence. The 23-year-old is a top-three play at wide receiver in any matchup, on pace to become the first player with 2,000 receiving yards in a season. With Miami's Tyreek Hill on bye this week, Jefferson needs 89 yards to retake the NFL lead.

Nov 18, 2022 11:51 AM EST

Remains limited Thursday

Jefferson (toe) practiced on a limited basis Thursday.

Analysis: Listed as limited on Wednesday's estimated injury report, Jefferson remained that way as the Vikings got back on the practice field in preparation for Sunday's contest against the Cowboys. He told Chris Tomasson of the St. Paul Pioneer Press on Thursday that his toe is OK, so his limitations this week appear to be precautionary. Friday's report will reveal whether or not Jefferson heads into the weekend with a designation.

Nov 17, 2022 3:04 PM EST

Limited with toe injury

Jefferson is listed as a limited participant on Wednesday's practice estimate due to a toe injury, Patrick Walker of the Cowboys' official site reports.

Analysis: Jefferson likely took part in the walkthrough but apparently would've been limited if the Vikings had held a real practice. He caught 10 passes for 193 yards and a TD in the dramatic win over Buffalo this past Sunday, showing no sign of any limitations as he made big plays from the start of the game until the end. Jefferson will face another tough defense this Sunday, assuming the toe injury isn't anything serious.

Nov 16, 2022 2:37 PM EST

Almost 200 yards in signature win

Jefferson caught 10 of 16 targets for 193 yards and a touchdown in Sunday's 33-30 overtime win over the Bills.

Analysis: Jefferson capped Minnesota's first drive with a 22-yard touchdown catch, but his best was yet to come. With the Vikings facing a 4th-and-18 down 27-23 late in the fourth quarter, Jefferson made a catch-of-the-year candidate by wrestling the ball away from a defender with one hand for a 32-yard gain. Jefferson added clutch catches of 14, six, 13 and 24 yards across the remainder of the fourth quarter and overtime, in addition to drawing a key pass interference penalty on Minnesota's go-ahead drive in OT. The former LSU standout could be the none-quarterback MVP of the league at this point, leading the 8-1 Vikings with 1,060 receiving yards heading into a Week 11 home game against the Cowboys.

Nov 13, 2022 2:06 PM EST

Eclipses century mark in win

Jefferson brought in seven of 13 targets for 115 yards and a touchdown and rushed once for 10 yards in the Vikings' 20-17 win over the Commanders on Sunday.

Analysis: Jefferson was in the familiar position setting the pace in receiving yards and targets for the Vikings on the afternoon, and he checked in just two catches shy of tying newcomer T.J. Hockenson for the team lead in receptions. Jefferson also recorded his third touchdown grab of the season in the first quarter to cap off an opening drive where he recorded four receptions for 48 yards overall, and his team-high 47-yard catch early in the fourth quarter led to a key Greg Joseph field goal. Jefferson heads into a tough Week 10 road matchup against the Bills with four 100-yard efforts in his last five games.

Nov 6, 2022 2:19 PM EST

Solid numbers in Week 8 win

Jefferson brought in six of eight targets for 98 yards in the Vikings' 34-26 win over the Cardinals on Sunday.

Analysis: Jefferson co-led the Vikings in receptions and paced the team in both yardage and targets, but he had an almost quiet performance by his lofty standards against a Cardinals defense that's proven adept at slowing down top receivers all season. The third-year star saw his three-game streak of 100-yard performances snapped in the process, albeit barely, but he'll have a solid opportunity to get back over the century mark against a Commanders defense that's given up plenty of chunk plays through the air this season.

Oct 30, 2022 2:16 PM EST

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