The Minnesota Vikings have made a bold but anticipated move by exercising the fifth-year team option for All-Pro wide receiver Justin Jefferson.
Jefferson was selected by the Vikings as the No. 22 overall pick in the first round of the 2020 NFL Draft and the franchise holds the right to add a fifth year to his deal during the offseason period following his third professional campaign.
The Vikings exercised the fifth-year option on their promising player Justin Jefferson
NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport shared via Twitter that the Minnesota Vikings have exercised the fifth-year team option for their young WR Justin Jefferson, keeping him with the team through the 2024 season and setting him up for a massive payday, with the option valued at a whopping $19.7 million.
The #Vikings have officially exercised the fifth-year option for star WR Justin Jefferson, source said, perhaps the biggest no-brainer on earth (only slight hyperbole).
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) April 25, 2023
The 23-year-old will earn just $2.4 million in 2023 and the fifth-year option will set him up to earn an impressive $19.7 million for the 2024 season per Spotrac, however, this whopping amount is also below Jefferson’s true market value in a salary cap sport.
Jefferson wasn’t afraid to express his confidence in placing himself at the summit of today’s best NFL receivers and he showcased belief in his capabilities in Kameron Hay of Complex in July of 2022 citing, “I’ll say after this year I’ll be the best receiver in the NFL. I definitely have to give it to [Las Vegas’] Davante Adams as of now … but I’m pretty sure after this year, it’s going to be me.”
The former LSU Tigers recorded career highs with 128 receptions and 1,809 receiving yards, becoming the youngest player in the league to ink the record in his name and also broke four franchise records, including surpassing former Vikings’ Cris Carter’s and Randy Moss’ respective franchise marks for receptions and yards in a single season.
Justin moonlighted as a hero by catching 324 passes throughout his career with 100 receptions in the last two seasons and also holds the record for the longest reception of any player (71 yards) as a rookie.
With his fifth-year option now picked up, Jefferson is set to be a key part of the Vikings’ offense for the foreseeable future. Fans will undoubtedly be eager to see what Jefferson can do with another season under his belt and a hefty new contract to boot.