Vikings’ Gary Kubiak reveals how he views Justin Jefferson
The Minnesota Vikings were able to alleviate the runner in their receiving corps by adding Justin Jefferson with the 22nd overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft. It appears offensive coordinator Gary Kubiak already has an idea of where Jefferson will be featured on offense.
According to Chad Graff of The Athletic, Kubiak acknowledged the prospect of Jefferson doing a majority of his work from the slot position:
“That’s something he’s exceptional at.” He added that it would be fair to say Jefferson will “move inside quite a bit.”
Kubiak’s comments hardly come as any surprise considering the inside is where Jefferson made his bones as a star at LSU. Although there was some speculation regarding how his skill set would transition to the NFL, it seems the Vikings will be working around his strengths as a rookie.
Jefferson finished the 2019 campaign with 109 receptions, 18 touchdowns, and 1,518 yards while working primarily out of the slot. He also boasted a 92.3 percent catch rate on contested targets during that time, meaning he has no problem making the grab in tight windows.
Of course, it would be far-fetched to assume that Kubiak will only limit Jefferson to the inside given his expansive route tree. It is safe to say that he will have an opportunity to take on an immediate role in the passing game as the effective replacement for wide receiver Stefan Diggs.
He could be poised for a productive rookie year by establishing himself as the clear-cut No. 2 option to wide receiver Adam Thielen for quarterback Kirk Cousins.