Minnesota Vikings sign young star to massive deal

The Minnesota Vikings and star wide receiver Justin Jefferson have agreed to a four-year, $140 million contract extension that includes $110 million guaranteed, sources told ESPN. The deal makes him the highest-paid non-quarterback in NFL history.

The deal was negotiated by WME Football and includes $88.743 million due at signing. The Vikings announced Monday morning that Jefferson agreed to a contract extension through the 2028 season but did not disclose financial terms.

“The time has finally come. The deal I’ve been waiting for since I was a kid,” Jefferson said in a video posted on Instagram. “I’ve been questionable my whole career. Not highly recruited. Not the first receiver drafted. This whole journey has not been easy for me… to be able to get the opportunity to play at the highest level. Talent, it’s a privilege.

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Vikings owners Mark and Ziggy Wilf said in a statement that Jefferson “has earned this contract and we are pleased that he will remain with the Minnesota Vikings for a long time to come.”

“From the moment I arrived in Minnesota, Justin has consistently proven to be one of the best players in the NFL on and off the field, and we’re excited to have him be a cornerstone of our franchise for a long time to come,” Viktor said. said Kwesi Adofo-Mensah, general manager of the Kyungs. “He is a living embodiment of our culture with a joyful dedication to the process and our goals. We couldn’t be more excited for Justin and his family.”

Jefferson also thanked his parents, brother, agent, as well as Vikings management, coaches and fans in an Instagram video.

“You all set the tone. You all set the mood. You all set the energy,” Jefferson said in the video. “I’m excited to be ready for another five years…This is just the beginning of it all, but we’re not done yet. Please wait.”

The day before the 2023 season began, Jefferson turned down a contract offer from the Vikings that would have paid him more than $28 million per year. The three-time Pro Bowler bet on himself, and the bet paid off, with Jefferson’s four-year extension worth an average of $35 million per season. This average annual value is $1 million higher than the previous non-quarterback record set by San Francisco 49ers pass rusher Nick Bosa.

According to league sources, multiple teams have inquired about trading Jefferson this offseason. But the Vikings let each of them know they had zero intention of trading Jefferson, who was about to start a historic four-year run in the NFL.

Adofo-Mensah said at the NFL Scouting Combine earlier this year that he never considered trading Jefferson, even if it would help him land a quarterback in the draft.

“We think he’s the best receiver in the league and should be compensated for that,” Adofo-Mensah said at the time. “We think he’s one of the best non-quarterback players in the league and feel he deserves that compensation.”

Since being selected by the Vikings with the 22nd overall pick in the 2020 draft, Jefferson has caught 392 passes for 5,899 yards and 30 touchdowns.

As the 2022 Offensive Player of the Year, Jefferson averaged 98.3 receiving yards per game, the most in NFL career history, and the 6.5 catches per game he averaged in his first four seasons led all receivers. The second tallest among golfers.

Jefferson, who turns 25 later this month, will lead Virginia after replacing quarterback Kirk Cousins ​​with free agent Sam Darnold and first-round draft pick JJ McCarthy in the offseason. The Kings enter the next generation of offense.

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Gallery Credit: Scott Prather

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