Justin Jefferson Has One Message for Fantasy Football Owners

We caught up with Minnesota Vikings wide receiver about working with London on da Track and how Kirk Cousins' griddy is coming along.

Photo by Adam Bettcher / Getty Images

Not many wide receivers have entered the league and made an impact as fast as Justin Jefferson. He broke the NFL rookie record for receiving yards in 2021 and he was probably the first pick in your Fantasy Football draft. The newly nominated team captain for the Minnesota Vikings is elevating his game on and off the field, with Super Bowl aspirations and brand building with the likes of Under Armour.

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Jefferson teamed up with producer London on da Track to test his versatility in the recording studio by recreating a new ‘Protect This House’ anthem for Under Armour’s already well known slogan. We talked to Justin about his career goals and upcoming projects, as well as off the field thoughts on the ever living griddy and his relationships with past and present teammates.

This interview has been condensed and edited for clarity.

So first things first, walk me through the new Under Armor campaign. I know London on da Track is going to be on there. Y'all did a little video shoot that’s gonna be droppin’ in September, run me through the whole process.
Well first of all, to have a new deal with Under Armor was something that I was excited to be a part of. Of course, I want to build a brand and put it [Under Armour] back on the map so I was excited to be a part of it with the rest of the guys that they represent. And I felt like this was going to be something big. 

With the commercial it was a very fun and interesting thing to be a part of. Having it back in my hometown and at my high school, with the kids that we work out with, was so cool to see all of their happy faces and to be a part of that. It was definitely a fun thing to see.

I know you can't give too much away, but we heard you might have been in it in the studio a little bit.
A little bit. You know, I had to get on a track a little bit.

Did you know London before this or did you just link for the campaign?
You know, of course I know of London with the style of music that I listen to. But this is the first time I met him. So all of this whole experience was pretty cool.

I know a few days ago you were nominated as team captain which is clearly a big honor. Just walk us through what that means to you.
I mean, it is definitely a big honor. It's something to really think about and to really look back on. It goes back to all of the countless hours that I’ve worked hard on getting better every single day. So to have everybody else nominate me to be a captain and to be a face of the team is something that is special and goes to show you that my teammates respect me as well.

I’m going to bring it back a little bit. LSU has had a lot of success recently. Football, women's basketball, baseball. Is there any one particular team that you've had fun watching since you graduated? 
The women's basketball team was great to see. I mean they were never that great before, you know we never won the championship like that, so I feel like that was a great thing to see. It was cool to see that and cool to see them represent my school.

If you had to put up an LSU Mount Rushmore of athletes you are there for and you can include yourself. You don't have to for LSU athletes that are like that for sure.
Shaquille O'Neal number one. You have to put Joe Burrow up there. I got to think of all the LSU guys, I don't want to miss anyone. I feel like you have to put Leonard Fournette there too. For number four… Honey Badger. 

Sticking with LSU, I know people talk griddy with you all the time. It's still so popular. Do you think the griddy will ever die out or did you guys create something that is going to live on forever?
It's crazy how long it's been going. It doesn't seem like it's dying down. It’s definitely crazy how far the dance has come. It's crazy to see all the kids doing it now, you can just click on a commercial and randomly see people doing it.

I feel like the griddy is stuck with me. That's my signature thing that people know me as, when I get in the endzone I griddy, just like Jamar [Chase]. I feel like that's our signature thing, coming from Louisiana, coming from New Orleans, and that is something to represent our culture and where we come from.

If you had to rate Jamar’s griddy, is it a solid 10 or is there anything that you can nit-pick him on?
You have to put it at 10. He does it differently than I do it. He does more of the chill griddy. I do the harder griddy. So I feel like there's two different versions of it, but I like it like that because we both started doing it at the same time. 

So is the griddy for everyone or is it only meant for people who can swag it out?
I feel like just the thought of people doing it on their own and putting their own flavor to it is what makes it genuine. That's what makes it a dance to last forever. Everybody can put their own little twist to it, so it doesn't really matter if they're doing it right as long as they think they’re doing it right. That’s what means the most.

How's Kirk Cousins griddy coming along, it’s alright?
[Laughs.] Kirk's actually getting better, as you’ve seen he has no choice but to get better.

Did you get to watch the Netflix documentary with Kirk, Quarterback? If so, did you learn anything about him throughout that whole thing? 
I feel like it was just great just to show people who he really is outside of football and outside of people just bashing him on social media. So I feel like it was a great series to really show who he really is, his family, where he comes from, how he has grown up, and the culture that he has with his family.

Everyone has seen him on the plane with the chains on. Is there a moment that people haven't seen that is a favorite Kirk moment that sticks out to you?
That's definitely a top moment for sure because it's something that was so unexpected. Especially coming from London that was kind of a fiery thing to be a part of to see him acting outside of his character. But I mean, just his leadership in general is something that I enjoy being a part of. He doesn't really care what people think. He's leading his team and saying the right things to encourage his team. So whatever it takes for him, he's going to do it to lead us in the right direction.

One more question for you, as you know, everyone and their mom these days are playing Fantasy Football. Is there a message to everyone out there who has these fantasy drafts coming up looking for a receiver?
I mean, I feel like people already know that I'm the number one pick. I'm going to continue to be doing what I've been doing since I stepped foot into the league. But at a better pace, at a better rate, and of course I'm trying to win games. I want to be playing for the big game at the end of the year so in order to do that I got to put up crazy stats and lead my team to victory.

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