Last week, Minnesota Vikings’ defensive end Danielle Hunter signed a five-year contract extension that paid him a whole lot of money. Now, thanks to Ben Goessling of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, we’re starting to see some of the details of his contract come out, and the deal is pretty team-friendly, all things considered.
This season, Hunter will still be playing on the final year of the rookie contract he signed in 2015, though he did get some up front money from the Vikings this season for signing his new extension. His extension kicks in for 2019, and here are the numbers on that.
Hunter's cap numbers each year of the deal: $5.063M in 2018, $13M in 2019, $14M in 2020, $15M in 2021 and 2022, $12M in 2023.— Ben Goessling (@GoesslingStrib) July 4, 2018
To this point, I have been mistaken about some information that I had previously been using. I thought that Hunter may have been a candidate for the franchise tag after this season, and that the value of such a deal would be around $14 million. The franchise tag value for defensive ends this past season was actually just over $17 million, and you’d have to assume that it’s only going to go up in future years.
That means that, for the next five seasons, Danielle Hunter is going to be making significantly less than players at the defensive end position that are playing under the franchise tag. It would appear that he accepted a very team-friendly deal in order to stay in a defense that he thrives in with a coaching staff that he likes, which is definitely a good thing for the Vikings.
I mean, he’s still going to be making a ton of money, but you have to figure that if he had played out this season and either hit the open market or been tagged after all, that number would be a whole lot higher than it is.
Now, as we’ve said on numerous occasions, the Vikings can turn their attention to Stefon Diggs and Anthony Barr. Will either of them be taking a “team-friendly” deal in order to stay in Minnesota, or are they going to try to cash in? Honestly, I wouldn’t be able to blame either of them either way, but it will be interesting to see how things play out.