The Minnesota Vikings find themselves in a waiting game as star wide receiver Justin Jefferson‘s return is delayed for at least one more game. The team officially announced that Jefferson has been downgraded to “out” for the upcoming clash against the New Orleans Saints on Sunday, keeping him on the injured reserve list as he continues recovering from a hamstring injury.
Jefferson’s setback stems from the October 8th game against the Chiefs, leading to the decision to place him on injured reserve, sidelining him for a minimum of four games. Having completed the mandatory duration, Jefferson returned to practice earlier this week, participating in limited sessions.
Despite earning a “questionable” injury designation on Friday, the team’s consensus leaned towards a cautious approach, opting to delay his return. Head coach Kevin O’Connell, expressing concern on Wednesday, deemed a comeback against the Saints as “a little aggressive.”
Jefferson’s Patient Approach: Vikings Trust in Addison as Receiver Takes Extra Recovery
Jefferson echoed this sentiment on Thursday, emphasizing his reluctance to play if not at full health, specifying he wouldn’t return at 80 or 90 percent capacity. Ultimately, the collective decision was to keep him inactive for another week.
Before the injury, Jefferson had an impressive start to the season, meeting the high expectations for the fourth-year wideout. Accumulating 571 receiving yards in five games with an average of 114.2 yards per game, Jefferson showcased the form that defines his career.
In Jefferson’s absence, rookie Jordan Addison has stepped up admirably, amassing 534 receiving yards and seven touchdowns. As the Vikings gear up for the Saints, they’ll rely on Addison to lead the wide receiver corps, granting Jefferson an additional week to attain full recovery.