Insider Source Suggests Minnesota Vikings May Have to Pay Justin Jefferson More Than $100M Before 2027

Justin Jefferson
Matt Krohn-USA TODAY SportsCredit: Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports

How much money is Justin Jefferson worth? We’re about to find out.

Jefferson broke out onto the scene as Stefon Diggs’ replacement on the Minnesota Vikings, earning Pro Bowl honors as a rookie, but now he’s about to enter the final year of his rookie contract, which means it’s time to pay up.

The Vikings have been working to get Jefferson signed to a long-term contract extension since the first moment 2020 first-round picks were allowed to negotiate–last offseason. While the Vikings couldn’t quite reach an agreement during last season’s training camp, the expectation is that the All-Pro receiver will sign on the dotted line before the 2024 season kicks off, but for how much?

SI’s Albert Breer explains complexities of Justin Jefferson’s contract extension

Wide receivers are one of the highest-paid positions in the NFL, and Justin Jefferson is expected to set a new record as the highest-paid non-quarterback in league history. He’s worth every penny, but how many pennies will the Wilf ownership group be forced to part with?

Albert Breer recently dove into the Jefferson extension situation in his latest mailbag on Sports Illustrated, where he details why negotiations have been so tricky.

“Jefferson’s got $19.743 million coming on his fifth-year option this year. That means just to match what St. Brown landed from the Detroit Lions, the Minnesota Vikings have to get to $80 million over the first three years of a new contract. Now, you consider that Jefferson is a better player. And maybe you consider Nick Bosa’s numbers, as he’s the NFL’s top-paid nonquarterback. Bosa had a $17.859 million fifth-year option for ’23. He got $98.551 million over the first three years of his new deal. That’s $80.692 million over the first two new years.

Add that up, and given what Bosa got, and the difference between Jefferson and St. Brown, I think you’re talking about a starting point of $80 million for the first two new years, which means $100 million over the next three years. Probably all guaranteed. And probably then some. Which is why this is no easy negotiation.”

Albert Breer on Justin Jefferson’s upcoming Minnesota Vikings extension

If $100 million sounds like a lot, it’s because it is.

Only eight players have signed a contract that guarantees at least $100 million throughout the duration of their deal, and all are quarterbacks. Meanwhile, Breer makes it sound like Jefferson would not only clear $100M but do so within the contract’s first three years.

No receiver has ever signed a contract that offers more than the $52.5 million guarantee Tyreek Hill agreed to in 2022. But then again, there isn’t anyone else built like Justin Jefferson.

Seriously. Jefferson has the most receiving yards in a player’s first four NFL seasons, and he’s even missed seven games with an injury. If paying over $100 million in guarantees is what’s required to keep the best player on the Vikings, then GM Kwesi Adofo-Mensah shouldn’t hesitate to cut employee No. 18 a check bigger than any other receiver has ever seen.

Related: 10 Best Minnesota Vikings QBs of All-Time; Where is Kirk Cousins?

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