Two teams on Tuesday made the perfunctory move of picking up the fifth-year options of two of the league's biggest stars, a precursor to what will be mega-contracts for the duo.
Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow and Vikings wide receiver Justin Jefferson are now under contract through the 2024 season
Barring long-term extensions before then, Burrow will make $29.5 million and Jefferson $19.743 million guaranteed in the 2024 season.
"This is a mechanical step along the way and we will continue to work with Joe and his representatives to secure his long-term future as a Bengals," the Bengals said in a statement
Burrow's new benchmark came in the form of Jalen Hurts' $255 million extension last week that, at least temporarily, made Hurts the highest-paid player in NFL history.
The No. 1 overall pick in 2020, Burrow has thrown for 11,774 yards and 82 touchdowns in 42 career starts. His rookie season was cut short by a devastating knee injury, but he's led the Bengals to the Super Bowl and the AFC Championship Game the past two seasons
Jefferson, 23, the No. 22 overall pick in 2020, has earned Pro Bowl honors in each of his first three seasons. He has racked up 324 career catches for 4,825 yards and 25 TDs in 50 games (48 starts). He was also named to his first All-Pro team in 2022.
Davante Adams is currently the highest-paid WR in the league by contract value at $140 million. Tyreek Hill is No. 1 with $30 million in average annual value.
2020 NFL Draft classmates Tua Tagovailoa, CeeDee Lamb and Tristan Wirfs have already had their options picked up.
The deadline to pick up fifth-year options is May 2.
--Field Level Media