The Minnesota Vikings’ 2023 campaign is turning from bad to worse. The Vikings not only find themselves 1-4 after the first five weeks of the season but will also have to try to turn things around without their star wideout Justin Jefferson.
Jefferson suffered a hamstring injury in Sunday’s 27-20 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs, and the Vikings plan to place the 2022 NFL Offensive Player of the Year on Injured Reserve. This means that Jefferson will be sidelined for at least four weeks.
Reportedly, the Vikings will be cautious with Jefferson’s return, not wanting him to return too soon and then end up with an even more severe injury. The team plans to evaluate him ahead of the Week 10 game against the New Orleans Saints before figuring out whether he needs more time to recover.
“We’re going to have to medically make a good decision and help almost protect him from himself a little bit in a way where we’ve got to take care of him and get him back to 100 percent,” said Vikings’ head coach Kevin O’Connell during a press conference on Monday.
After finishing the last season with a career-high 128 catches and 1,809 receiving yards, Jefferson opened 2023 in a similar fashion. He has 36 catches for a league-leading 571 yards while also adding three touchdowns.