Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Justin Jefferson emerged as one of the top players in the NFL at his position in his third season and an amazing catch at a pivotal moment of the team’s win Sunday over the Buffalo Bills.
On 4th-and-18 with the game on the line, Kirk Cousins found Jefferson screaming down the sideline. The pass was high, just barely in the reach of Jefferson to catch it with one hand and bring it down for the first down to extend the drive. Somehow, he managed to hang onto the ball even with cornerback Cam Lewis grasping at the football with two hands.
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Jefferson’s incredible catch helped Minnesota get down to the goal line, but the drive would stall. A few different quirks were needed for the Vikings to win the game, including a Josh Allen fumble in his own end zone which was recovered by Eric Kendricks, and then later a Patrick Peterson interception in overtime.
“Just the way my body went up, him catching the ball in his hands and me taking it from him, the whole play was crazy,” Jefferson said after the game, via the team’s website. “But it starts with the O-line, with the blocking giving Kirk enough time to get me that opportunity to go up and make a play, but it's not just me. This is a collective team win. So many people played so many parts in this win. I'm just glad to be 8-1.
JUSTIN JEFFERSON'S INCREDIBLE GAME LIFTS VIKINGS OVER BILLS IN CHAOTIC OVERTIME THRILLER
“It felt like it was unreal, felt like a movie,” he added, via the Star Tribune. “I told everybody this means, this is our season, for us to win out, go to the Super Bowl. We just got to keep working.”
Jefferson had 10 catches for 193 yards. He had a touchdown catch all the way back in the first quarter. It was the fifth time he has crossed the 100-yard mark and the third time he has caught 10 or more passes. It is the third time he has had 150 or more yards.
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He passed Randy Moss and Odell Beckham Jr. for the most games with at least 150 receiving yards by a player in his first three seasons in NFL history. Jefferson now has seven. He also tied Beckham and Lance Alworth for the fewest games to reach at least 4,000 receiving yards. He has 4,076 receiving yards in 42 games.