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Pair of Vikings make PFF’s list of 50 best NFL players

Not a huge surprise

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NFL: DEC 09 Steelers at Vikings

We’re finally ready to get the 2022 NFL season underway. . .well, the Training Camp portion of it, anyway. . .and we’ve got one more list to take a look at that contains a couple of members of the Minnesota Vikings on it. This list is just about as straightforward as it gets.

Pro Football Focus has compiled their list of the 50 best players in the NFL right now. Two members of the Vikings were on the list, and given the various rankings and listings we’ve highlighted over the past week or so they’re probably exactly the two that you’d expect.

The first Viking on the list is Justin Jefferson, who PFF has down as the 17th-best player in the league.

Jefferson has more receiving yards than any other player in NFL history after their first two seasons. It’s impossible to say he is the best receiver in the game right now, but it’s also impossible to say with any certainty that he isn’t. Jefferson is a complete weapon for the Vikings’ passing game and will now play in an offense under new head coach Kevin O’Connell that features the passing game even more.

Jefferson is the third-highest ranked receiver on the PFF list, behind Davante Adams (#4) and Cooper Kupp (#13). His usage in the new-look Vikings’ offense has been a subject of much discussion here since Kevin O’Connell was hired, and we’re finally going to get to see some of what’s in store for #18 here soon.

The other Viking on the list is Dalvin Cook at #37.

(37?! He’s 37?!)

Cook hasn’t had as good of blocking in front of him as some other elite running backs, but his ability to make something out of nothing shows up time and time again for the Vikings. He has averaged 3.0 yards after contact for his career while posting double-digit breakaway runs of 15 or more yards in each of the past three seasons.

Dalvin Cook has been incredibly productive for the Vikings when he’s been on the field. We all know that. He’s had to deal with injuries in pretty much every season of his NFL career and it’s probably something that we’re just going to have to factor in with our expectations for him each season. Hopefully whatever he has to deal with this coming season will be minimal.

Cook is the third-highest running back on the list behind Derrick Henry (#16) and Jonathan Taylor (#21).

Looking at the NFC North representation on the list, neither the Chicago Bears nor the Detroit Lions had anyone crack the PFF Top 50 list. The Green Bay Packers, on the other hand, wound up with five players on the list, more than any other team in the league. Seems sus, but what do I know?