On Tuesday, Budda Baker signed a 4 year, $59 million contract extension with the Cardinals, making him the highest paid safety in NFL history.
Sources told ESPN’s Adam Schefter about the historic extension. Baker, a 2x Pro-Bowler, will earn $14.75 million a year and will be guaranteed $33.1 million.
Arizona is making 24-year-old, two-time, Pro-Bowl selection Budda Baker the highest-paid safety in the NFL history, giving him a four-year, $59 million contract extension ($14.75M average per year), sources tell ESPN.
Asked about the deal, agent @DavidMulugheta confirmed it.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) August 25, 2020
For the bright young star in AZ, Baker Budda is:
— The highest paid safety NFL history
— $14.75M a year average.
— $33.1M guaranteed.
$33.1M guarantee https://t.co/tNVLZPBXZg
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) August 25, 2020
A Budding Budda Baker
Baker, 24, is only entering his 4th season in the league. The Cardinals selected him in the second round of the 2017 draft out of Washington, and initially intended to utilize him at strong safety.
He earned a Pro Bowl selection for his performance on special teams in his rookie year but only started 7 games at SS. When Kliff Kingsbury arrived in Arizona, he moved Baker to free safety, where he blossomed.
Baker was selected to his second Pro Bowl after he recorded a league high 107 tackles in 2019. In his time in the NFL, Baker truly has improved every season and shown that he is perhaps the most versatile defensive player in football. He has played 186 snaps at edge, 460 at LB, 882 at slot CB, and 708 at FS.
It is understandable, therefore, why the Cardinals were ready to spend so much to keep him. Baker will be in Arizona through 2024 and will be the key piece in the Cardinals’ defense.
This contract extension shows how much sport has changed in the last 10 years. However good Baker has been, he has only been in the league for 3 years.
Moreover, he has failed to record a single interception in the NFL. Think about that for a second. The highest paid safety in league history has not picked the ball off once in his career.
Only 4 other players at the position average above $14 million a year: Eddie Jackson, Landon Collins, Kevin Byard, and Tyrann Mathieu.