Vikings Approach Anthony Barr, Stefon Diggs About Extensions

Now that Eric Kendricks and Danielle Hunter have signed their extensions, the Vikings’ defensive fortification efforts are nearly complete. They now have Harrison Smith, Linval Joseph, Everson Griffen, Xavier Rhodes, Kendricks and Hunter under contract long-term. Barr represents the final piece for this current veteran core.

Stefon Diggs is the other key Viking whose contract is up after 2018, and Minnesota brass has been talking with both Barr and Diggs about extensions. Representatives for both Barr and Diggs have been contacted by the Vikings for extension talks, Andrew Krammer of the Minneapolis Star Tribune reports.

These conversations began in June, per Krammer. This would continue the summer-extension blueprint Rick Spielman‘s utilized the past three years. Griffen, Rhodes and Joseph all agreed to deals within a 10-day span around the start of the Vikings’ previous training camp, and Smith and Hunter re-upped with Minnesota in June of 2016 and ’18, respectively. Kendricks agreed to his extension this April.

Barr said recently scant progress had been made on his extension, but the Vikings are in the final stages of this years-long plan — one that saw Spielman authorize re-ups for Joseph and Griffen in 2017 despite the duo having multiple seasons remaining on their old contracts. Finalizing deals for Diggs and Barr would represent a significant victory for Minnesota’s front office, but they won’t be as easy now that a fully guaranteed $28MM-AAV deal for Kirk Cousins is on the books through 2020. The Vikings possess approximately $14MM in cap space.

PFR recently looked at the extension cases for both Barr and Diggs, and CBS Sports’ Joel Corry believes the Vikings would let these starters reach the open market rather than using the franchise tag. Due to on- and off-ball ‘backers being classified together, a Barr tag would cost the Vikes more than $16MM. Diggs, who is set to make $1.96MM this season, would see a $17MM-plus tag if the Vikings took that course of action next March. So, the next few weeks will be critical for the Vikings.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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3 comments on “Vikings Approach Anthony Barr, Stefon Diggs About Extensions

  1. Pablo

    At this point diggs might be more important. He’s proven to be a top WR. I still think it should be short enough deal. He could prove it and make more down the line and they won’t be stuck with an overpaid receiver that loses it at some point. Win win. Hopefully it works out for both.

    • JT19

      Diggs isn’t as essential (to the Vikings) since Thielen has proven to be an effective possession receiver in the Wes Welker mold. However, all of this depends on who Cousins ends up favoring more. If Cousins clicks with Diggs better than Thielen then keep Diggs and vice versa.

      I disagree with the short term deal though. It would obviously make a ton of sense for Minnesota to sign a short term deal but it makes little sense for Diggs to do so. If Diggs is going to get top WR money (so roughly $15m AAV and say $30m+ guaranteed, both of which would be on the low end) then he’ll have more security on a long term deal. Unless he’s getting a fully guaranteed, or close to fully guaranteed deal, short term deal (I imagine 2-3 years) then he’s taking a big gamble on himself. In all likelihood he’ll make more money on one long term deal than taking a shorter term deal and essentially banking on a second contract after that.

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