Early Wednesday morning, it was being reported that the Minnesota Vikings and defensive end Everson Griffen were very close to agreeing on a four-year contract extension. Then, at 12:43 eastern standard time, NFL insider Ian Rapoport reported that the two parties had agreed on terms, and that Griffen’s four year deal would be worth $58 million, with $35 million guaranteed.
Everson Griffen Signs Contract Extension
The #Vikings deal for Everson Griffen is a 4-year extension worth a whopping $58M, source said. $34M in guarantees. $14.5M new money avg. 💰💰
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) July 26, 2017
Since entering the league in 2010, Everson Griffen has become one of the Minnesota Vikings’ most productive mainstays on defense, registering 48 sacks. However, the bulk of those quarterback takedowns have taken place over the last three years, where Griffen has registered 30.5 of them. As the Vikings aim to become a more competitive squad in the NFC North, keeping key defenders like Griffen, safety Harrison Smith, and linebacker Anthony Barr has to be a priority.
With the emergence of pass rusher Danielle Hunter this year, there were actually rumors that Griffen would have to be let go. After all, this is a team hoping to retain the services of Stefon Diggs, Harrison Smith, Anthony Barr, and others over the next few years, and that’s without including the confusion quarterback situation. If Teddy Bridgewater can come back, does he get big quarterback money? If he can’t, does Sam Bradford get it instead?
However, the Vikings very wisely decided to retain the services of Everson Griffen, even at a steep price. After all, nobody on the team has registered more sacks for the Vikings since 2014, and he gives them the most consistent pass rusher they’ve had since Jared Allen. The Vikings offense will lean heavily on the likes of Dalvin Cook and Latavius Murray this year, but if they are to be competitive, it will be because of players like Everson Griffen.