ESPN Staff Writer
3 Minute Read
EAGAN, Minn. — Speculation around Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Justin Jefferson’s absence from six games due to a strained right hamstring has led to various theories. However, Jefferson clarified that his absence is solely due to his injury not being fully healed.
Despite ongoing recovery and speculation about his return in the upcoming game against the Chicago Bears, Jefferson remains unsure about his status. His frustration about missing a potential seventh game is evident, and he emphasized the importance of ensuring his injury heals properly before returning to the field.
Jefferson’s recovery has progressed to a point where he has been able to run practice routes at full speed. However, his uncertain status for Monday night’s game remains a topic of discussion, with Jefferson emphasizing the importance of evaluating his condition and making a well-informed decision about his readiness to play.
Following his injury on Oct. 8, Jefferson was placed on injured reserve, and the 21-day practice window to return began on Nov. 8. While his return is expected at some point, both Jefferson and the team have agreed on a cautious approach to ensure his full recovery.
Coach Kevin O’Connell has acknowledged the possibility of Jefferson missing the upcoming game, with the potential for an extended recovery during the team’s Week 13 bye. Despite criticism and impatience from fans, Jefferson has reiterated his focus on returning to the field only when fully ready and has emphasized the importance of prioritizing his health over fantasy football.
Addressing the social media criticism, Jefferson expressed frustration at the negative comments and false narratives surrounding his recovery process, dismissing theories about his absence being related to contract negotiations. He remains focused on his goal of returning to the field at full strength.
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