NFL Insider Offers Update on Justin Jefferson’s Shoulder Injury

Fantasy Football Wide Receiver Rankings Week 14

Getty Justin Jefferson #18 of the Minnesota Vikings scores a touchdown during the fourth quarter against the Carolina Panthers.

Minnesota Vikings second-year star wide receiver Justin Jefferson went down with a shoulder injury on Friday that left fans holding their breath at Vikings training camp.

Multiple sources confirmed Jefferson suffered an AC joint sprain in his shoulder after falling to the ground during a drill. NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport followed up after the team ran several tests and found that Jefferson’s sprain is minor and he is considered “day-to-day” and will not be impacted long term by the injury, per a source.

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“I’m hearing a big-time sigh of relief in Minnesota for Justin Jefferson, one of the best young players on their team and really one of the best young receivers in all of the NFL,” Rapport said. “The battery of tests have been completed and all is well, it is in fact minor… He’s probably not going to practice today, maybe not tomorrow, but this is something not long term, not going to affect his participation at all in the season.”

 How Long Will Jefferson Sit Out?

Fans can catch their breath as Jefferson appears to have avoided serious injury in training camp.

Minnesota faces the Denver Broncos on Saturday and will have joint practices Wednesday and Thursday this week. The Broncos, much like the Vikings, loaded up at cornerback this past offseason by signing Ronald Darby and Kyle Fuller — both graded among the top 32 cornerbacks in the NFL by Pro Football Focus — and drafting Patrick Surtain II in the draft.

Jefferson would benefit from getting extended practice time with different cornerbacks, however, health will likely be the utmost priority a month before Week 1’s season opener against the Cincinnati Bengals.

His condition will be monitored this week, heading into the preseason opener at home.

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WR Depth Put to the Test

With Jefferson day-to-day, the battle for the No. 3 wide receiver spot will be fierce with opportunities to take Jefferson’s reps in practice.

KJ Osborn has become the frontrunner through the first two weeks of training camp and has undoubtedly secured a roster spot at the very least after struggling his rookie year.

Recently signed veteran wide receiver Dede Westbrook has been hampered after coming off a hamstring injury last season. He’s slowly getting up to speed and figures to be a contender for the third wide receiver spot when healthy.

Fourth-round pick Ihmir Smith-Marsette is likely fifth in the pecking order after impressing early in training camp. He holds an advantage over Chad Beebe, Dan Chisena, Myron Mitchell, Whop Philyour and Blake Proehl who are all on the fence approaching 53-man roster cuts.

Bisi Johnson suffered a torn ACL in the last week of July, which opened a roster spot that would have otherwise been his.

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