Justin Jefferson Matched a 55-Year-Old Record in Week 1
Ever since entering the NFL in 2020, Justin Jefferson has had a knack for setting records. He broke the Vikings rookie receiving record. He was the first player to record 3000 receiving yards over the course of his first two NFL seasons. In Week 1 of the 2022 season, Justin Jefferson has found another record with his name on it.
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After a nine-catch performance for 184 yards and a pair of touchdowns on Sunday against the Packers, Jefferson became the first player in 55 years to have performances of 160+ receiving yards and 2+ touchdowns in each of his first three NFL seasons. He’s also only the second player in NFL history to accomplish the feat. The first was Bob Hayes who did so with the Dallas Cowboys from 1965-67.
Jefferson’s performance on Sunday was absurdly great, but the craziest part of it is that it felt like it could have been even better. 158 of his 184 receiving yards came in the first half, and so did both of his touchdowns. He was inches away from adding a third touchdown, but he couldn’t quite complete the toe drag to make it count.
In the second half, the Vikings moved more towards a run-first approach since they were up by multiple possessions for entirety of the game. If the Packers had been able to string together a touchdown drive to make the game closer, Jefferson very easily could have approached the Sammy White’s franchise record of 214 receiving yards in a game.
Because of these reasons, it’s very feasible to believe that a similar game could happen again this season, if not multiple times. With that in mind, we have to keep an eye on another NFL record, per ESPN. This was his fifth game of 150+ receiving yards, and the only player in NFL history to record more at age-23 or younger is former Vikings, Randy Moss. He had six.
Assuming Jefferson’s Week 1 outburst is not a fluke, we could very well see him match or even break this record this season. Either way, 2022 looks like a very fun year to enjoy watching #18 do his thing. Buckle up, it’s going to be a crazy ride.
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Josh Frey is a Class of 2020 graduate of The College of Idaho. He graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Creative Writing as well as minors in History, Human Biology, and Journalism. When he’s not writing about the NFL, Josh‘s hobbies include training for a marathon, playing video games, and rooting for the Milwaukee Brewers and Bucks. For more of his takes, NFL and otherwise, check out his Twitter account: @Freyed_Chicken