Minnesota Vikings All-Pro wide receiver Justin Jefferson had seven receptions for 45 yards and a touchdown in a win over the New York Jets on Sunday. Jets cornerback DJ Reed says he’s the reason Jefferson was held in check. Jefferson disagrees. Was he limited by Reed?
“I was in his sh-t all game,” said Reed. “He got that one route on me, so I’m frustrated. But I felt like I did a good job containing. But it’s frustrating because I don’t want to give up a touchdown or be the reason why my team loses. I’m going to look at it and see what I could’ve did to play it better. But other than that I held my own against him for sure.”
In what shit😂😂You can’t talk having safety help…call me when yo coach trust you to go 1v1 https://t.co/RTC6crOe3k
— JJETS✈️ (@JJettas2) December 5, 2022
This being 2022, you know Jefferson would see this and have something to say. He responded via Twitter.
“In what sh-t. You can’t talk having safety help…call me when yo coach trust you to go 1v1,” Jefferson tweeted.
Not to be outdone, Reed had more to say.
“You are the best WR on your team..Yes my safety was skating most of the day you were held in check tho but great win today,” Reed tweeted.
You are the best WR on your team.. Yes my safety was skating most of the day you were held in check tho but great win today✊🏾.
— DJ_2Great (@D7_Reed) December 5, 2022
Reed is right with his last response. Jefferson is the best receiver on the Vikings and probably the league. He’s third in DYAR and seventh in DVOA, according to Football Outsiders. On the season he has 88 catches for 1,277 yards and six touchdowns. He averages over 100 yards receiving per game.
So in a sense, he was “held in check.”
Now the idea that he was in Jefferson’s “sh-t” is fool’s gold to an extent. Yes, Reed could be more aggressive, because as Jefferson pointed out, he had safety help over the top. When a defensive back isn’t worried about being beaten over the top he can be aggressive.
But it’s a chicken and egg situation. The safety help is the reason Jefferson didn’t run wild. He even drew a third defender at times.
That’s the ultimate sign of respect.
Jets head coach Robert Saleh and defensive coordinator Jeff Ulbrich were not going to let Jefferson have one-on-one coverage. He would beat Reed routinely and the Jets would decrease their chances of winning the game.
As it stands they were in the game late with a chance to win largely because they were able to limit Jefferson and running back Dalvin Cook. They didn’t shut either out by any means as they both scored touchdowns. They were just held from having explosive games.
DBs and WRs are always going to get into back-and-forth war of words and physical battles on the field. It adds to the fun of the game.
Despite the war of words, Jefferson was held from having an over the top game but he wasn’t shut down. The great ones rarely are.
Jefferson received MVP chants from Vikings fans but isn’t ready to soak all that in.
“I won’t believe it until I get it,” he said.
NFL MVP awards usually go to quarterbacks. Right now Patrick Mahomes, Jalen Hurts, Joe Burrow, and Josh Allen all have better odds and are front-runners.