The Gut Check No.518: Justin Jefferson Brings Immediate Upside

Matt Waldman examines the September tape of Vikings wide receiver Justin Jefferson and concludes that for Fantasy GMs, the rookie is worth the price of admission. 

When the light comes on...

I don't know about you, but I've seen lights come on in a lot of different ways. When it comes on as expected, the bulb burns bright as soon as you hit the switch. Sometimes, it's not that automatic.

The bulb flickers a few times before emitting steady light, giving you just enough pause to wonder if something is wrong. Or, the first thing to burn is the filament, glowing orange like a hot coal and then crescendoing into a brilliant glow of white that fills the glass and the surrounding space beyond.

Occasionally, one has to tap the bulb or screw it a little tighter in order to solidify the connection. And then there's always the genius solution—remembering to roll the dimmer switch to its proper position.

Young players are a lot like bulbs when you consider the variety of ways the light can come on. Depending on whether you begin the trajectory of Justin Jefferson's emergence after a slow start in training camp or in Week 1 of the regular season where the showed signs of crescendoing brilliance, the Vikings' rookie from LSU either needed a couple of love taps or a little patience to allow that orange glow of the filament to fill the room with light.

After earning 9 targets, 7 catches, 175 yards, and a touchdown in Week 3, as long as Jefferson continues performing like an NFL starter, no one cares about his development trajectory. Based on the three games I studied of Jefferson's new NFL portfolio of work, there are excellent reasons to consider him an immediate impact rookie whose light will continue shining as long as Kirk Cousins accidentally hits the dimmer switch while screaming if we 'liked that.'

Just as told you in May 2019 that A.J. Brown, despite concerns from much of the fantasy community, had one of the best player-team fits from his draft class, I hold similar optimism for Jefferson in Minnesota. The reasons are similar:

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