One of the NFL's elite is one step closer to returning.
Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Justin Jefferson has been activated off injured reserve, the team announced Tuesday.
Tuesday marked the final day Jefferson could be activated off injured reserve, so the news doesn't come as a huge surprise.
Jefferson, whose practice window was opened Nov. 8, has missed the last seven games due to a right hamstring injury sustained in a Week 5 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs. He's in line to return to the field after the team's upcoming bye in Week 14 action against the Las Vegas Raiders.
He'll return to a Vikings contingent that sits at 6-6 and in the thick of the playoff race, but has lost two straight games after rebounding from a 1-4 start punctuated by the loss of Jefferson.
Led initially by quarterback Kirk Cousins, the Vikings rallied and won three in a row but lost their QB1 to a torn Achilles in Week 8. Rookie backup Jaren Hall was lost to a concussion the following week against the Atlanta Falcons, but Josh Dobbs, who Minnesota acquired from the Arizona Cardinals ahead of the trade deadline, jumped into the fray and led the Vikings to an improbable comeback win over the Atlanta Falcons and continued his strong play in a victory against the New Orleans Saints the next week.
The Vikings' winning streak was snapped at five games with a Week 11 loss to the Denver Broncos, however, and Dobbs struggled in a loss to the Bears on Monday during which he threw four interceptions.
Just who Jefferson will be catching passes from upon his return is now in question, as head coach Kevin O'Connell did not commit to Dobbs as his starter going forward following Monday's defeat.
In five games this season, Jefferson has hauled in 36 receptions for 571 yards and three touchdowns, averaging 114.2 yards per game.
The Vikings visit the Raiders on Dec. 10.