Packers Writer Makes Outrageous Claim Involving Justin Jefferson

Vikings Little Movie
Feb 9, 2023; Phoenix, Arizona, US; Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Justin Jefferson poses for a photo after receiving the award for AP Offensive Player during the NFL Honors award show at Symphony Hall. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

It is time for the offseason to end, as the offseason talk has gone too far.

Packers Writer Makes Outrageous Claim Involving Justin Jefferson

A popular Vikings radio show debated if they would trade Justin Jefferson if that guaranteed the first overall pick and the subsequent selection of Caleb Williams, the quarterback of USC. It took the three hosts about four seconds to agree that it was the right thing to do because Williams is special. He might be good, but Jefferson is on pace to be a Hall of Famer. That shouldn’t be traded away for a lottery ticket. Who could’ve known that it was not the worst debate involving Jefferson this week?

Packers Writer Makes Outrageous Claim Involving Justin Jefferson
Oct 30, 2022; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Justin Jefferson (18) celebrates his catch against the Arizona Cardinals in the first quarter at U.S. Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports.

Jefferson is awesome; we all know that. Somehow, some folks in the Packers’ orbit think they have a player who could be even better than the Viking. Bruce Irons, a writer for the website and also the author of a few books about the NFL, isn’t convinced about Jefferson’s ceiling, especially compared to Packers receiver Christian Watson.

It all started with this tweet, and it is necessary to read it twice to avoid accidentally missing anything important. But even after closely studying the nine words, it is impossible to find any hidden meanings or the word doesn’t. He is serious.

Jefferson’s ceiling is unknown. However, even if we have already seen Jefferson’s upside in the 2022 season, it is that of a Hall of Famer. Only five players ever had more than his 1,809 receiving yards in a single season. His 128 receptions also rank him sixth all-time. Of course, he had a 17th game, but he played only half of it and was barely targeted in that game. It didn’t make a big difference.

Justin Jefferson One
Dec 24, 2022; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Justin Jefferson (18) celebrates his touchdown against the New York Giants during the fourth quarter at U.S. Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports.

The receiver is enjoying the best start into a career of all receivers in NFL history, at least from a yardage standpoint. Four thousand eight hundred twenty-five receiving yards through three seasons is a ridiculous accomplishment. It is also the most yards of any player in NFL history before turning 24. Speaking of age, the ironic fact of all of that is that Christian Watson is exactly 35 days older than Jefferson. Yes, you read that right. He is older than Jefferson. So if one can get better, the other one also does.

Watson was the Packer’s second-round pick in 2022, a pick acquired from the Vikings. He is a physical specimen and combines speed and size like only a few others. Irons used athleticism to explain his take after a huge backlash.

Indeed, Watson is the more physically gifted athlete, but there is more to wide receiver play. Fundamentals like route-running ability, hands, football IQ to know how to manipulate defenders, yards after the catch, contested catch ability, and so on. Jefferson is fantastic at all of it. Oh, he’s also an underrated athlete. Jefferson reached a relative athletic score of 9.68 compared to Watson’s 9.96. He’s not quite Watson as an athletic phenom, but he’s still great in that department. Regardless, what makes him special is his skillset as a complete receiver who can do everything at an elite level.

Dec 25, 2022; Miami Gardens, Florida, USA; Miami Dolphins safety Jevon Holland (8) attempts to tackle Green Bay Packers wide receiver Christian Watson (9) during the first half at Hard Rock Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

Having a higher ceiling than Jefferson means that Watson can be Randy Moss or Jerry Rice. That’s the level of player they are implying.

Watson has a high ceiling because of his speed and size. However, believing he has Jefferson’s upside is still a longshot because that is generational and Hall of Fame worthy. There aren’t many WRs who are finalists for the MVP trophy.

The Packers’ wideout recorded 41 receptions for 611 yards and 7 touchdowns. He had a decent rookie season and broke out in the campaign’s second half. Watson could become a problem for the NFC North, and Irons and other Packers fans actually had a point if they claimed that their guy has the potential to become one of the best receivers in the league, but they lose all credibility by bringing the best WR in the league into the conversation.

Janik Eckardt is a football fan who likes numbers and stats. The Vikings became his favorite team despite their quarterback at the time, Christian Ponder. He is a walking soccer encyclopedia, loves watching sitcoms, and Classic rock is his music genre of choice. Follow him on Twitter if you like the Vikings: @JanikEckardt