NFL Breaks New Ground: Historic Payday for Top Defender


Defensive Marvel: Winfield Breaks Records with Historic Contract

Unparalleled Honor

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have rewritten the history books with the signing of safety Antoine Winfield Jr. to a groundbreaking four-year, .1 million contract, making him the highest-paid defensive back in NFL history. Winfield has solidified his place as the first safety ever to achieve this distinguished honor.

This remarkable deal cements Winfield’s status as an elite playmaker, earning him not only the highest salary payout but also the most guaranteed money, a whopping million, ever given to a safety.

All-Pro Performance and Franchise Cornerstone

Named to the 2023 All-Pro first-team, Winfield has blossomed into one of the league’s most formidable safeties since joining the Buccaneers as a rookie. His impressive resume includes:

  • Team captain and role model on and off the field
  • Career season in 2023:
    • Six forced fumbles (league-leading)
    • 122 tackles (career high)
    • 12 passes defended (career high)
    • Six sacks (career high)
    • Three interceptions (career high)

A Historic Investment

The Buccaneers’ decision to retain Winfield with such a lucrative contract underscores his invaluable impact on their defense, led by head coach Todd Bowles. Through the franchise tag, GM Jason Licht negotiated the extra time needed to secure a long-term extension that befits Winfield’s exceptional contributions.

Winfield’s record-breaking deal marks a testament to the Buccaneers’ commitment to keeping their defensive anchor in place for years to come. They join a select group of eight franchises to reach long-term agreements with players tagged as franchise players this offseason.

Extended Stays in Tampa Bay

Winfield’s contract extension is one of several key moves by the Buccaneers this offseason, showcasing their intent to retain their core players. Quarterback Baker Mayfield signed a three-year, 0 million contract, while receiver Mike Evans (two years, million) and linebacker Lavonte David (one year, .5 million) will also continue their journey in Tampa Bay.

With the likes of Winfield, Mayfield, Evans, and David at the helm, the Buccaneers will remain a formidable force in the NFL, aiming to extend their dominance both defensively and offensively.

Data sourced from: