Vikings’ Justin Jefferson Calls Out NFL’s Top Cornerback Ahead of Late-Season Matchup

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Getty Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Justin Jefferson called out Los Angeles Rams cornerback ahead of their 2021 matchup.

Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Justin Jefferson is on a mission to prove his record-breaking rookie season wasn’t a fluke.

To do that, Jefferson will have to shine and shake off the skeptics who are already calling a sophomore slump for the 21-year-old Pro Bowler.

Jefferson hasn’t shied away from proving his doubters wrong throughout his young career. Most recently, he upped the ante, calling out Los Angeles Rams cornerback Jalen Ramsey.

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‘Jalen Ramsey… I’m Waiting’

Jefferson joined teammate Patrick Peterson on Peterson’s All Things Covered podcast on Monday. He was asked by co-host Bryant McFadden which cornerback he’s most excited to face this upcoming season.

Jefferson barely breathed before spilling his answer.

“Jalen Ramsey… I’m waiting. That game is circled. That game is circled for me,” Jefferson said.

Ramsey, recently ranked the No. 1 NFL cornerback by CBS Sports, has a penchant for calling out receivers and talking trash but has yet to respond to Jefferson’s challenge.

The Rams visit the Vikings at U.S. Bank Stadium on Dec. 26, setting up an after-Christmas matchup that could have heavy playoff implications with both squads looking to contend this season.

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Jefferson Earns High NFL Top 100 Honor

This week, NFL Network released its “2021 NFL Top 100 Players” list, an annual ranking of the top 100 players in the league voted on by players.

Jefferson was the youngest player to make the list at No. 53 overall and was ranked ahead of the 2020 Offensive Rookie of the Year, Los Angeles Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert.

A year ago, Jefferson broke a Super Bowl-era rookie receiving yards record, catching 88 passes for 1,400 yards and seven touchdowns in 14 starts. He was the only rookie to make the Pro Bowl and was the only rookie wideout to earn All-Pro recognition besides Randy Moss in the past 30 years.

“There’s a lot of tremendous receivers in the league, and for me to be able to break a record that all of those guys couldn’t break, it was special for me,” Jefferson said. “Just having my name in the history books at the top of the list… that’s definitely a dream of mine. All of the hard work is paying off.”

Jefferson Recovering From Shoulder Injury

The Vikings had a scary moment during training camp nearly two weeks ago when Jefferson went down after taking a hit.

The injury turned out to be a minor AC joint sprain. Jefferson’s status and participation in practice have improved. He returned to practice on Monday. However, coach Mike Zimmer is limiting Jefferson’s in-practice reps with the 2021 season opener less than a month away.

When asked if he’d play in the preseason, Jefferson acknowledged that he’d like to play but that it wouldn’t hinder his performance after his record-breaking rookie year without a preseason due to the pandemic.

“I didn’t get any (preseason game snaps) last year, so I think I’ll be pretty good if I don’t get any,” Jefferson said.

CBS Sports’ senior writer Pete Prisco has recently championed his case for Jefferson ending the 2021 season as the league’s best wideout. While Prisco’s case for Jefferson is steep for a second-year receiver, the product out of LSU has shocked the NFL before.

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