Vikings: Justin Jefferson’s hamstring injury still in evaluation process

Justin Jefferson #18 of the Minnesota Vikings attempts to catch a pass during the second quarter against the Kansas City Chiefs at U.S. Bank Stadium on October 08, 2023 in Minneapolis, Minnesota.  ((Photo by Stephen Maturen/Getty Images))

The Minnesota Vikings fell to 1-4 on the season after a 27-20 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday, but the bigger concern might be the health of star receiver Justin Jefferson.

Jefferson left the game with a little over 12 minutes to play after suffering a hamstring strain while slipping on the turf at U.S. Bank Stadium running a route. He went to the medical tent for an evaluation, and spent the rest of the game on the sideline with a towel over his head.

He finished with three catches for 28 yards. Vikings coach Kevin O’Connell said Monday the team is still evaluating the severity of Jefferson’s injury. They’re waiting on MRI results, and there is no timetable for his return to the field.

"He’s down today, he’s one the most ultra competitors I’ve ever met. Shoot, he was trying to go back in the game as it was yesterday. We’re going to have to medically make a good decision and help almost protect him from himself," O’Connell said. "We’ve got to take care of him and get him back to 100 percent."

Jefferson came into the game tied for sixth in the NFL with 33 catches. He was second in the league with 543 receiving yards.

Jefferson is also seeking a new contract as he still has two years left on his rookie deal. The Vikings face a significant uphill climb to make the NFC Playoffs at 1-4, but the season isn’t over, especially with all of their NFC North Division games remaining. That starts with a trip to Soldier Field to face the Chicago Bears next Sunday.