The Minnesota Vikings have agreed to a four-year, $64 million contract extension with Harrison Smith, according to ESPN’s Mike Golic Jr. The deal makes Smith the second-highest paid safety in the NFL.
The Vikings had one of the best defenses in the league with Smith as an anchor, but have slipped from that elite level in the last few seasons. Last year, Minnesota ranked 27th in yards allowed per game and 28th in points per game allowed. That has to change for the Vikings to be contenders in 2021.
Minnesota should have a competent offense with Kirk Cousins, Dalvin Cook, Justin Jefferson and Adam Thielen. The Vikings were hoping to have TE Irv Smith Jr. healthy to start the season, but the tight end is expected to miss the beginning of the season with a torn meniscus. Smith’s extension means the Vikings are banking on the safety to maintain his stellar play and raise the level of the team’s defense.