The wide receiver said in July that he would be considered the NFL’s best wide receiver after the 2022 season, going out on a limb. In Week 10, the Vikings wideout flashed a big smile when asked if he thought that was indeed the case after a spectacular performance in Buffalo on Sunday.
As Jefferson told FOX Sports‘ Pam Oliver after a thrilling overtime win over the Bills, “I feel like I stated that today.”
Minnesota’s improbable win in Buffalo featured Jefferson catching ten balls for 193 yards and two touchdowns. According to NFL Research, this was Jefferson’s 20th career game with 100 or more receiving yards, breaking a tie with Odell Beckham and Hall of Famer Randy Moss for the most in his first three seasons.
An improbable one-handed catch in the fourth quarter saved Minnesota from certain defeat the first time around, highlighting Jefferson’s remarkable day. With two minutes left to play, Jefferson caught the 50-50 ball with Bills cornerback Cam Lewis draped all over him on fourth-and-18. Minnesota extended their late-game hopes with a spectacular 32-yard catch that took the Vikings from their own 27 yards to Buffalo’s 41 yards.
The Vikings‘ head coach Kevin O’Connell said Jefferson’s catch was a play that few could make in those critical situations, and one the Vikings could only dream about.
I’m extremely proud of Justin’s ability to battle against a wide variety of looks and coverages all season long. I think it’s one of the most impressive catches I’ve ever seen.” “He’s such a special, special player,” O’Connell said. We’re lucky to have Justin and the plays he made today. He showed up time and time again when we needed him.”
It was fitting that Jefferson’s career day occurred against the team Minnesota traded its former star WR to before drafting the LSU product in 2020. With 12 catches for 128 yards on Sunday in the losing effort, Bills wide receiver Stefon Diggs is a viable argument against Jefferson’s claim.
After Week 10, Jefferson ranks second in the league in receiving yards (1,060) and fourth in receptions (69), adding four touchdowns to his totals. It is certainly an impressive feat for Jefferson to be in that argument at the age of 23 regardless of the outcome of what is ultimately a moot point.