Justin Jefferson enjoying proving his doubters wrong

Justin Jefferson enjoying proving his doubters wrong

Justin Jefferson was the fifth receiver selected in the 2020 draft, but he’s outperformed every other wideout in the rookie class.

Jefferson has 61 receptions for 1,039 yards and seven touchdowns in 2020. He became just the second rookie in team history to eclipse 1,000 yards last Sunday, and now has the opportunity to break Randy Moss’ rookie record of 1,313 yards in 1998.

He’s currently fourth overall in receiving yards, well ahead of every other rookie. Cincinnati’s Tee Higgins is second among first-year players at 729.

But Jefferson hasn’t forgotten the criticism he received in the lead up to the draft about his potential limitations, and that four players at his position were selected before him.

“I think about it a lot and that’s what kind of fuels my game,” Jefferson said on Thursday, via Courtney Cronin of ESPN. “Just having in the back of my mind that there are always people that doubt me of doing certain things. There’s always people that have hatred towards me or whatever. I just use that as fuel towards my game and I just go out there and try to prove everybody wrong.”

Though offensive rookie of the year has become more of a quarterback award recently, Jefferson’s strong first season merits consideration for the honor.