Antoine Winfield Jr. will always be regarded among Vikings fans as the one that got away.

His father had a phenomenal NFL career, a good portion of which he spent with the Vikings.

Winfield Jr. also attended the University of Minnesota in the Vikings' backyard and starred on the field to the tune of being named All-Big Ten as well as a unanimous All-American in 2019.

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Still, he fell in the NFL Draft to mid-2nd round, ultimately being selected by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Since that time, Winfield Jr. has been one of the elite safeties in the NFL, and he was rewarded on Monday with a historically lucrative contract.

Winfield Jr. is now the highest paid defensive back in the history of the NFL:

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Antoine Winfield Jr. have reached agreement on a four-year, $84.1 million deal, agent David Mulugheta announced Monday.


The deal makes Winfield the highest-paid defensive back in NFL history -- the first time in modern NFL history that a safety has set this mark.


Winfield's deal includes $45 million guaranteed, the most ever given to a safety.

Winfield entered the offseason as a free agent, but the Buccaneers opted to utilize the franchise tag on their star defender to buy time to get this deal done.

Winfield now gears up to lead the Bucs defense for years to come.

Through his first four seasons, Winfield has amassed 384 total tackles, 7 interceptions, 11 forced fumbles, 8 fumble recoveries, and 15 sacks. He has been named to the Pro Bowl once (2021) and was named an All-Pro this past season.

Sources: and Pro Football Reference (Stats)

South Dakota Born NFL Players of this Century

While not a traditional powerhouse Nation Football League feeder, South Dakota has produces a fair number of football players that went on to the big time in the NFL.

Here are some that have played on various teams over the last couple of decades.



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