Why do Green Bay Packers fans love to obsess about being better than the Minnesota Vikings? The Vikings are hardly an irrelevant team like Green Bay fans like to claim, especially coming off of a season where Minnesota made the playoffs while Green Bay watched from home. Now without Aaron Rodgers on their team, and without being able to say their QB is much better than Kirk Cousins, Packers fans have moved onto comparing their receivers to all-universe WR Justin Jefferson.
Christian Watson has a higher ceiling than Justin Jefferson.
— Bruce Irons – Packers FTW (@BruceIronsNFL) June 20, 2023
It’s easy to get excited and hope for the best in the few months leading up to the season, but it’s also easy to get carried away. Every team’s fanbase has a decent player they insist will breakout and become generationally great at this point in the summer. Proof of this is that some believe that young WR Christian Watson is going to be a better player than Justin Jefferson. This is peak absurdity and completely unfounded optimism. Watson is taller, faster, and stronger, sure. That means little in the NFL if you can’t put all of those tools together in a game. Watson is also older than Jefferson, despite playing in two fewer NFL seasons.
Vikings fans probably remember Christian Watson best for dropping a sure-fire 75-yard touchdown from Aaron Rodgers in the season opener at U.S. Bank Stadium. Did Christian Watson play well over the course of the season? Absolutely! He had a spectacular stretch of games with multiple TD’s that won a lot of fantasy football leagues. But he still finished with fewer than 50 catches (41), less than 1,000 yards (only 611), and 7 touchdowns.
These numbers pale in comparison to Jefferson’s 2020 rookie campaign: 88 receptions, 1400 yards, and 7 touchdowns. That’s after having to wait on the bench for the first two weeks because of Mike Zimmer’s ambivalence towards playing rookies. Justin Jefferson is on track to be one of the best receivers in NFL history. He already amassed the most receiving yards in his first three seasons with 4,168. This season’s 128 receptions for 1,809 yards were recognized with NFL Offensive Player of the Year honors.
Happy 24th Birthday, @JJettas2! 🎂🎈
Justin Jefferson recorded 4,825 receiving yards before turning 24, the most by any such player in @NFL history.
— NFL Research (@NFLResearch) June 16, 2023
There’s little doubt that Christian Watson can turn into a legitimate WR1 soon. It’s also impossible to put him anywhere near Jefferson after just one decent season. In the meantime, Minnesota fans will be able to play as 99 OVR Justin Jefferson on Madden while also watching him obliterate more NFL records on the field. As a reminder to anyone who hasn’t heard enough – here’s some Jefferson highlights to seal the deal.
HBD to Griddy King @JJettas2!
So many more plays to make at the age of 24. 🛩️ pic.twitter.com/tWkJFWNBzR
— NFL (@NFL) June 16, 2023