The best wide receiver in the NFL, Justin Jefferson, should sign a mega contract extension this offseason. What will that look like? I am so interested to see how these numbers look when the deal is finalized.
Picked with the 22nd overall selection in the 2020 NFL Draft, Jefferson has established himself as the best pass catcher in the NFL and has nearly 5,000 receiving yards in just three seasons. He’s turning just 24 years old in June, has made three Pro Bowls, has won an Offensive Player of the Year award, and has never missed a game in the NFL.
He’s building a Hall of Fame career right before our eyes and is about to get paid. What will this contract extension look like?
What will a Justin Jefferson contract extension look like?
Jefferson appears to be a generational player at his position, and I don’t see any scenario at all where he is wearing a different jersey at any point in the next few seasons. The Minnesota Vikings hit the nail on the head with their selection of Justin Jefferson, and whatever contract extension he signs, he’ll deserve every penny.
Spotrac.com estimates his yearly value at $26.7 million a season, which is too low, but perhaps that is a starting point in negotiations for the new contract.
Among current wide receiver contracts, Davante Adams’ contract has the highest total value at $140 million. Tyreek Hill leads the way with $30 million in AAV, and Cooper Kupp leads the league in total guarantees at $75 million.
I think in Justin Jefferson’s case, he has an argument to lead the market in all three of those major categories.
To leverage himself in the future, I don’t think Jefferson signs a deal for more than four years. Signing shorter contracts allows players to re-up their pacts sooner. (See Laremy Tunsil)
Four years seems like a sweet spot and takes him into the end of his mid-20s, so he’d likely be able to sign one more large deal a few years down the road.
If I had to guess, knowing what we know about current wide receiver contracts, this is what I would project as Jefferson’s extension:
four years, $128 million, $80 million guaranteed.
So, in this deal, he gets the second highest total value contract with the most per year ($32 million), and the most guaranteed ($80 million).
This pact allows him to essentially demand another extension in about three seasons if he continues his insane production.
So, does that seem fair?