Mike Florio Claims Vikings Ownership is Holding Up Justin Jefferson Extension

Justin Jefferson
Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports

Reaching a conclusion on Kirk Cousins is a major talking point for the Minnesota Vikings’ front office this offseason. But general manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah knows the importance of signing Justin Jefferson to a long-term contract extension is even greater than the immediate future of Minnesota’s franchise quarterback.

Related: Shanahan Tree Coaches Keeping Close Tabs on Kirk Cousins in Hopes Vikings Keep Dragging Feet

With Jefferson, the Vikings are a dream destination for nearly any quarterback, but without 18, they’re just a cold-weather location offset by a state-of-the-art indoor stadium and a passionate fanbase.

In an ideal world, the Vikings find the answer to both their short and long-term QB questions this offseason, but no matter what, Jefferson’s contract must be dealt with. Otherwise, the Vikings run the risk of losing the NFL’s best receiver to free agency in 2025.

Vikings Playing Risky Game With Justin Jefferson?

justin jefferson
Credit: Lon Horwedel-USA TODAY Sports

After coming close to an extension leading up to the kickoff of the 2023 season, all indications are that both sides want to reach a long-term resolution this offseason.

However, one NFL insider, Pro Football Talk’s Mike Florio, states the Vikings are playing a dangerous game with Justin Jefferson.

“They are playing with fire here on multiple fronts with Justin Jefferson, who’s patience is eventually going to run out. I can confidently say, J.J. is very patient, but his patience will have it’s limits. The problem continues to be not the dollars but the structure. The Vikings are one of the few teams that will not fully guarantee beyond the first year of the contract for anyone other than Kirk Cousins. And if you’re not going to make that same exception for Justin Jefferson, you’re going to have a problem with Justin Jefferson. Eventually. You can say, ‘well I can’t believe what he turned down’. It’s not the dollars, it’s the structure, and fans need to hold ownership accountable. Because these are policies set by the Wilfs. They don’t want to guarantee in full money beyond the first year of that deal for anything other than the quarterback position.”

Mike Florio speaks on Justin Jefferson’s contract on KFAN

Jefferson is expected to sign the largest contract for a non-quarterback in NFL history this offseason, but the Vikings not being willing to offer contract guarantees past the first year could be driving a wedge between ownership and the team’s best player. That’s never a good look.

As important as the quarterback position is, Zygi Wilf shouldn’t have a hard time understanding Jefferson’s value to the Vikings. Not only is he the NFL’ s most dominant receiver, his off-field impact is off the charts thanks to being one of the most marketable-non QBs in the league.

Whether it’s the popularity of the ‘Griddy’ or his genuine character rarely seen from a superstar of his caliber, Jefferson is a one-of-a-kind. It’s time the Vikings start treating him like he’s different because No. 18 is definitely different.

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