Mike Freeman, chief prosecutor for Hennepin County, said the charges were filed following a complaint by Jefferson's girlfriend of three years that he grabbed her around the throat during an argument at her home early Monday.
The incident came following the Vikings' return home from Green Bay after those teams played to a 26-26 tie.
Freeman said the charge accuses Jefferson of seizing the woman by the throat and moving her off the bed onto the floor.
According to the legal filing, the woman said she, "did not fight back because she was having a hard time breathing and he is a lot bigger than her."
Jefferson was arrested about 7 a.m. Monday and he was released by the Vikings within 3 hours.
"We are saddened at the continuing inability of men to get this simple message: Don't hit, strangle, slap or in any other way assault your wife or girlfriend," Freeman said in a statement. "It is wrong morally and criminally, and we will prosecute you, as we do hundreds of men every year."