Justin Jefferson Goes Dark
He’s seen enough.
That’s the implication for Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Justin Jefferson, who deleted social media accounts this week. The reigning Offensive Player of the Year cited harassment and skedaddled.
Justin Jefferson Goes Dark
Jefferson has missed six consecutive games with a hamstring injury — and probably a seventh this Monday night — while his team has fired up a 5-1 record to keep the season alive.
But because folks have sent Jefferson persistent and bizarre messages on X, formerly known as Twitter, and Instagram, the 24-year-old deleted both accounts. He told reporters on Friday, “Y’all have no idea. It’s honestly crazy, the amount of people that really criticize you and talk very, very bad about you, calling you different names. You’re just trying to be healthy and trying to be your best on the field.”
NFL fans have a terrible tendency to direct message players about their fantasy football teams, evidently convinced personal notes will motivate them, which is mind-numbingly stupid.
“At the end of the day, it is what it is. I’m more worried about my team and me being healthy. I don’t really step out too much for me to hear it in public. But social media is a big part of day-to-day life nowadays, so of course, I see it everywhere on social media,” Jefferson continued.
The Vikings host the Chicago Bears on Monday Night Football, so the team’s faithful are closely monitoring Jefferson’s status. He claimed Friday that he is healing but won’t play until 100% healthy, and if a hamstring injury is aggravated, a player can be back to square one for a recovery timetable. Jefferson might play versus the Bears, but a more realistic return is December 10th at the Las Vegas Raiders after Minnesota’s bye week.
Jefferson also posted on the X app Tuesday before deleting the account, at least temporarily, “My health is wayyyy more important than you winning your fantasy games. It doesn’t matter how many times y’all flood my dms talking about me selling your team. I DONT CARE😂.”
Fantasy football managers are winding down regular seasons, with most playoff scenarios kicking off Week 15. Overzealous folks want Jefferson back in their lineups, and they think sending him notes will do the trick. It’s silly.
Jefferson will likely return to social media before too long, but this week’s wackiness is an example of the platforms gone wrong.
The Vikings’ front office and Jefferson’s representation will revisit contract extension talks in a few months after the camps couldn’t finalize a deal in September.
Dustin Baker is a political scientist who graduated from the University of Minnesota in 2007. Subscribe to his daily YouTube Channel, VikesNow. He hosts a podcast with Bryant McKinnie, which airs every Wednesday with Raun Sawh and Sal Spice. His Vikings obsession dates back to 1996. Listed guilty pleasures: Peanut Butter Ice Cream, ‘The Sopranos,’ Basset Hounds, and The Doors (the band).