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The Minnesota Vikings kicked off organized team activities (OTAs) Monday, but they did so without their most prolific player, as star wide receiver Justin Jefferson did not attend the start of this week's voluntary workouts, per ESPN.

The three-time Pro Bowler is entering the final year of his rookie contract and has been in talks with the team regarding a long-term extension. The 24-year-old also skipped most of Minnesota's voluntary offseason programming in 2023 before reporting for mandatory minicamp and training camp.

His absence comes less than a week after Vikings head coach Kevin O'Connell downplayed concerns over the wideout's contract, which has been the subject of much speculation and reporting since Jefferson first became eligible for a new deal prior to the 2023 campaign.

"I know everything's gonna get worked out there," O'Connell told the "Up & Adams" show ahead of this week's OTAs. "Justin knows the love and admiration that I have for him. And he knows that he's such a big part of what we do around here. That's on the field, that's off the field. He brings such a great energy to our building every single day. ... Justin Jefferson's a huge part of this organization."

General manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah has also spoken optimistically about striking a new deal with Jefferson, denying he's ever considered trading the receiver rather than extending him with a lucrative contract. Due $19.7 million under a fifth-year option in 2024, Jefferson could command in excess of $30 million per year on a new deal, considering fellow wideouts, including the Detroit Lions' Amon-Ra St. Brown, netted as much this offseason.