Jarius Wright is expected to be with the Minnesota Vikings for five more years after signing a four-year extension, through 2019, on Thursday for what ESPN is reporting at $14.8 million.
Wright is expected to be the team’s No. 3 receiver, just as he was last year when he had 42 catches for 588 yards, both career highs, and two touchdowns.
“Just the security and to know that the Minnesota Vikings want me around and to go after me before they started and not let me hit free agency, it just shows how much they care about me and how highly they think about me,” Wright said.
Wright was a fourth-round draft pick of the team in 2012 and has played in 39 games, starting 11 of them, in that time frame.
“His commitment to this team, hard work and leadership in the wide receiver room are several of the intangibles that he brings to our club on a daily basis and we’re excited for his future with the Vikings,” general manager Rick Spielman said. “This extension stays true to our philosophy of drafting young talent, developing them in our system and rewarding their success.”
Wright’s game-winning 87-yard touchdown reception in overtime against the New York Jets on Dec. 7 last year was the longest reception of his career and the second-longest in the NFL in 2014.
During his rookie season, Wright had the two longest passes (65 yards vs. Green Bay and 54 vs. Detroit) by a Vikings in 2012. The 54-yard reception was his first catch in the NFL.
Wright said he had been trying to put his contract situation out of his mind but admitted it weighed on him some.
“A little bit, but my main focus was playing football at a high level. You can’t think about things like that because it will affect your play,” Wright said. “Regardless if I got a contract extension or not, I wasn’t going to make a big scene or I wasn’t going to hold out. I wasn’t trying to distract the team or distract myself or anything like that. Football came first to me, contract or no contract.”