Once upon a time, former Vikings coach Mike Tice disclosed publicly his "Randy Ratio" idea, an ill-fated plan that called for 40% of the team's passes to be thrown to Randy Moss.
That brainchild was bound to backfire and is not something anyone should consider duplicating. And yet … I'd throw the ball to current Vikings rookie Justin Jefferson a lot, without adhering to a specific ratio.
However many times he gets targeted each game — that number was 12 on Sunday — it's probably not enough because this guy is that good this early in his NFL career.
"I'm so grateful that we drafted him," quarterback Kirk Cousins said.
Even when the rest of the Vikings offense looks somewhere between stagnant and incompetent, Jefferson rises above the mess.
Jefferson continued to produce at a historic clip Sunday in an otherwise ragtag offensive performance in a 27-24 overtime victory against the bumbling Jacksonville Jaguars.
A win is better than a loss — especially for a team clawing back into the playoff race — but the Vikings should not feel satisfied with much of their offensive outing against perhaps the NFL's worst defense. Turnovers remained a troubling theme for the second game in a row. Play-calling and game management were strange at times. The whole operation was just blah.
Jefferson wasn't flawless either. He had two penalties in overtime, one of them a questionable offensive pass interference that he labeled a "bad call." His positives far outweigh any hiccups.
Jefferson caught nine passes for 121 yards and one touchdown, and further cemented his mark in the record books.
He became the fifth rookie in the Super Bowl era to surpass 1,000 receiving yards in the first 12 games. His 1,039 yards are the most by a rookie at this point of the season since Houston's Bill Groman recorded 1,222 in 1960.
Jefferson also became the first rookie in Vikings history to post five 100-yard receiving games, breaking Moss' record of four such games in 1998.
Nobody could have predicted this start in his career. Except maybe Jefferson.
"Yeah, [1,000 yards] was just a goal that I wanted to achieve," he said. "I know it's not likely as a rookie, but that's just a goal that I had in the back of my mind. I just come out here and get the job done."
Nothing about Jefferson screams "rookie." Not the way he runs routes. Not the way he makes contested catches look so effortless. Not the trust that Cousins clearly has in him in any situation.
The offense was desperate for a jolt after looking sleepy in the first half. The Vikings finally took a deep shot to Jefferson in the third quarter and he hauled in a 40-yard pass down the sideline while drawing a pass interference penalty that didn't matter. That play woke up the offense and led to a touchdown that cut the deficit to 16-13.
Next drive, Jefferson executed a gorgeous double move that created separation for a 20-yard touchdown. He broke toward the middle of the field, gave a quick deke and then broke back outside.
The defender had no chance.
"He's just hard to cover," coach Mike Zimmer said. "He's a guy that has great acceleration off the line. He tracks the ball really, really well."
Zimmer then noted Jefferson's "rookie mistakes," which can be taken as a compliment because it serves to remind that while not nearly a finished product, he already ranks among the league's most productive receivers.
There are times when the Vikings offense is struggling or looks out of sync, and I find myself mumbling, "Just throw the darn ball to Jefferson!"
One of those moments came in the fourth quarter when the Vikings faced a third-and-18. Throw the ball to Jefferson. Nope, a handoff to Dalvin Cook. Why?
The Jaguars had no answer for Jefferson, who seemed to make a catch or draw a penalty whenever a pass came his way.
"If the ball is in the air, I've got to go get it," he said. "There's nothing much to it."
He wasn't bragging, rather just making an observation. He's that confident, and that good, which makes it easy to forget that he has only 12 games on his résumé.