On Thursday night, Justin Jefferson is destroying the New England Patriots stop group downfield. Jefferson has already amassed 94 receiving yards and a touchdown in the first half of the game between the Minnesota Vikings and the New England Patriots on the strength of six grabs and seven targets.
The fact that Justin Jefferson has just broken a new NFL record is even more impressive; according to ESPN Stats & Info, the Vikings wide receiver now holds the record for the most individual receiving yards in a player’s first three seasons in the league.
Justin Jefferson now has the most receiving yards by a player through their first three seasons in NFL history.
— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) November 25, 2022
For Vikings supporters, the fact that Randy Moss, a former wide receiver for Minnesota, held the record before Jefferson makes his achievement much sweeter.
Justin Jefferson now has the most receiving yards by a player in their first 3 seasons. The player before him to hold that record?
Randy Moss. pic.twitter.com/HOTQINEKYx
In his first three NFL seasons (from 1998 to 2000), Moss played in 48 games and racked up 4,163 receiving yards and 43 touchdown catches. For many athletes, that is already the start of a career, but for Moss, it was only the beginning.
In contrast, Justin Jefferson had 4,109 receiving yards as of Week 12 of the 2022 NFL regular season. In the same three-year period, Jefferson needed six fewer games than Moss did to produce the same amount of work.
However, Jefferson only scored 22 touchdowns over that time period, compared to Moss’ 43 touchdowns. Nevertheless, Justin Jefferson has now entered that statistic into the records, and according to his pace, he may be setting more records in the near future.
In this game against the Patriots, Jefferson’s pursuit of Moss’ record wasn’t his only driving force. After being shut down by the Dallas Cowboys in a home loss to them by a score of 40-3 in Week 11, he was hoping to bounce back with a stronger effort.