E Point Perfect

PFF Names Most Explosive Vikings Playmaker


Sep 25, 2022; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Justin Jefferson (left) and running back Dalvin Cook (4) in action against the Detroit Lions during the game at U.S. Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

The Vikings will start their playoff journey on Sunday when the team faces the New York Giants. Minnesota was absent from the postseason for two seasons, the Giants since 2016. Both head coaches are in their first year, so they will share their first playoff experience as the top decision-makers. The game will feature some high-level playmakers.

The Giants have Saquon Barkley in the backfield, one of the most dynamic players in the NFL. He recorded 1,650 yards from scrimmage and ten touchdowns. Barkley can take the ball to the house on every given play.

PFF Names Most Explosive Vikings Playmaker

Not only do the Giants have an elite playmaker, but the Vikings also have one. PFF named the most explosive playmaker for every playoff team.

PFF Names Most Explosive
Dec 17, 2022; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Justin Jefferson. Mandatory Credit: Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports.

The most explosive Viking is Justin Jefferson — not very surprising, but it’s still good to see that the media is recognizing the star wideout.

Jefferson didn’t quite manage to break the NFL record for receiving yards in a season, but his league-high marks in receptions (128) and receiving yards (1,809) are obviously hard to scoff at. Only Tyreek Hill had more total receptions of 15-plus yards (48 vs. 47). It’s scary to think that the 23-year-old talent might still have an even higher ceiling to reach.

While specific one-off plays didn’t overly factor into this breakdown, Jefferson’s ridiculous one-handed catch against the Buffalo Bills does deserve special mention for arguably being the single-best catch of the year. Making the official NFL Twitter account spazz out is the cherry on top of (another) excellent season from one of the game’s brightest young talents.

Ian Hartitz, PFF

Jefferson broke all kinds of records. He set the single-season franchise records for catches and yards, broke Randy Moss’ record for most yards in the first three seasons, and led the league in yards and receptions as the youngest player ever, breaking an 86-year-old record. The Vikings offensive and opposing defensive game plans are completely focused on Jefferson. He is one of the top players in the league and one of the most fun to watch players in the sport.

Bleacher Report Says
Dec 24, 2022; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; New York Giants defensive tackle Dexter Lawrence (97) tackles Minnesota Vikings running back Dalvin Cook. Mandatory Credit: Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports.

Before Jefferson became the offense’s focal point, Dalvin Cook was that guy, and he fired up an honorable mention from PFF.

RB Dalvin Cook provided one of the team’s top highlights courtesy of his 64-yard catch-and-run touchdown during the Vikings’ historic comeback victory over the Indianapolis Colts. While his 10 touchdowns were actually a bit underwhelming considering he racked up 303 touches, Cook was rather unlucky considering only Najee Harris was stopped more at the one-yard line on drives in which the player didn’t wind up scoring.

Ian Hartitz, PFF

Dalvin Cook is an interesting choice, considering that PFF ranks him 48th of 64 eligible running backs. However, his high volume of touches helped him finish sixth in rushing yards with 1,173 and 12th in rushing scores. His efficiency is terrible. He is one of the team’s leaders, an underrated feat, but his on-field contributions are replaceable.

The running back will enter an offseason with a lot of chatter about his future, as the Vikings could save almost $8 million of their cap space by releasing him. But first, he will be a big factor in a potential Vikings postseason run. He showed in the past that he could win games by himself and run all over opponents. The ability to run the football is crucial in getting receiver Jefferson open.

Janik Eckardt is a football fan who likes numbers and stats. The Vikings became his favorite team despite their quarterback at the time, Christian Ponder. He is a walking soccer encyclopedia, loves watching sitcoms, and Classic rock is his music genre of choice. Follow him on Twitter if you like the Vikings: @JanikEckardt


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