The Minnesota Vikings are the hottest team in the NFL. They are riding a 5-game winning streak that has brought them from the league’s basement into the NFC playoff picture, and they’ve been successful through mounting injuries and challenging adversities that had the potential to derail their season. And for their prime time game against the Broncos this weekend, they may be getting back one of the league’s best players in Justin Jefferson.
Vikings Winning Despite Injury Woes
So is RB Alexander Mattison. pic.twitter.com/387jF8PWOK
— Dov Kleiman (@NFL_DovKleiman) November 17, 2023
The All-Pro wide receiver has missed the entirety of his team’s winning streak. Jefferson suffered a hamstring injury during Minnesota’s 7-point loss to the Chiefs in Week 5, and he was placed on the injured list and would miss at least four weeks. A couple of games later, the Vikings lost star quarterback Kirk Cousins to a season-ending Achilles ailment, and it looked as though the team was headed for a top-5 pick in next year’s draft.
But they fought hard to win three straight before the arrival of Josh Dobbs, who has been a revelation in helping Minnesota win in the last two weeks. And now, with Jefferson eligible to return to action, there is reason for even further optimism when it comes to postseason hopes for the Vikings.
On the team’s official injury report heading into the weekend, Jefferson is listed as questionable, and will truly be a game-time decision.
Jefferson Will Need To Return Before The Bye Week
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) November 17, 2023
If he doesn’t play this week, he’ll be running out of eligibility time. When a player is activated off of the injured reserved list, it opens a 21-day window for him to return to the game day roster. If the player doesn’t hit the field in that time frame, he is ineligible to come back for the remainder of the season. Jefferson is now in his second week back from activation, and will need to come back against the Bears in Week 12 if he is unable to go this Sunday.
The game against the Broncos will be played on the road, inside Empower Field at Mile High in Denver. The home team, who had a thrilling victory over the Bills in Week 10, are currently listed as 2.5-point favorites.