Rightfully so, as the two are incredibly young players and arguably the best already at their respective positions.
New York Jets Sauce Gardner “loves” these types of games:
Aside from the special physical (6-foot-3, 33 1/2″ arm length) and athletic (4.41 speed) gifts that Gardner has, he breeds confidence. Something he was lauded for throughout the pre-draft process. Also, more importantly, an intangible any great cornerback needs.
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The attitude Gardner has and the presence he provides have undoubtedly made an impact on this Jets football team. Knowing his mindset, it comes as no surprise that he is ready to rise up to the challenge of Jefferson.
When asked about whether or not he gets amped for games against guys considered the best, Gardner, with a smile on his face, said the following.
“Definitely. You know, these are the types of games that I love. I love going against the best. So, I’m looking forward to it and I know our guys in the secondary, they’re looking forward to it as well.”
No surprise, Gardner is ready for this exact type of a matchup.
Statistically, on the year, Gardner leads the NFL in passes defended with 14.
Jefferson is second in receiving yards by just one yard as his 1,232 trail, only Tyreek Hill with his 1,233.
When it comes to receptions, Jefferson is third in the NFL with 81. He has scored five touchdowns and is averaging 15.2 yards per catch. The third-year, 23-year-old wide receiver has seven 100-yard receiving games this year.
Gardner has totaled two interceptions and has broken up a pass in nine of the Jets games this year.
To most, this matchup between the Jets and the Vikings is the must-see, best game of the week. And the specific on-field, one-on-one that will garner loads of attention all throughout the day will be this one between Gardner and Jefferson.
As he has proven all throughout his rookie year in 2022, expect Gardner to rise up to the unique opportunity and make his impact felt for the Jets in this big game.