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Derwin James is the highest-paid safety in NFL history - who are the top 10?

Los Angeles Chargers safety Derwin James agreed to a four-year, $76.5 million extension, making him the highest-paid safety in NFL history.

Update:
Los Angeles Chargers safety Derwin James agreed to a four-year, $76.5 million extension, making him the highest-paid safety in NFL history.
Harry HowGetty Images

The Los Angeles Chargers signed safety Derwin James to a four-year, $76.5 million extension with $42 million guaranteed. That means he’ll be earning around $19.1 million per year, making James the highest-paid safety in NFL history. He has now surpassed Steelers’ Minkah Fitzpatrick, who was recently given a $73 million extension. That’s quite the raise for James, who was making $12.38 million over four years, around $3,097 annually before. He was the 34th highest-paid safety and has now skyrocketed to number one.

Safeties aren’t typically the highest-paid players in the NFL, but the standard is going up every year. Let’s take a look at the top ten highest-paid safeties in the NFL.

1. Derwin James, Chargers:

$19.1 million ($76.5 million over 4 years)

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA - FEBRUARY 06: Derwin James #33 of the Los Angeles Chargers interacts with fans after the 2022 NFL Pro Bowl at Allegiant Stadium on February 06, 2022 in Las Vegas, Nevada.
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LAS VEGAS, NEVADA - FEBRUARY 06: Derwin James #33 of the Los Angeles Chargers interacts with fans after the 2022 NFL Pro Bowl at Allegiant Stadium on February 06, 2022 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Christian PetersenAFP

2. Minkah Fitzpatrick, Steelers:

$18.24 million ($72.98 million over 4 years)

Minkah Fitzpatrick firma una extensión por cinco años con los Pittsburgh 
Steelers
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Minkah Fitzpatrick became the highest-paid safety in the NFL just recently, but has now been surpassed by Derwin James.Joe SargentGetty Images

3. Jamal Adams, Seahawks:

$17.5 million ($70 million over 4 years)

Seattle Seahawks star safety Jamal Adams is scheduled to have surgery on his shoulder, meaning he will be sidelined for the rest of the season.
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Seattle Seahawks star safety Jamal Adams is scheduled to have surgery on his shoulder, meaning he will be sidelined for the rest of the season.

4. Harrison Smith, Vikings:

$16 million ($64 million over 4 years)

Minnesota Vikings safety Harrison Smith is one of those good players that every team that has aspirations should have. In the game he had an interception and returned it for a TD.
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Minnesota Vikings safety Harrison Smith is one of those good players that every team that has aspirations should have. In the game he had an interception and returned it for a TD.Brace HemmelgarnUSA Today Sports

5. Justin Simmons, Broncos:

$15.2 million ($61 million over 4 years)

Five interceptions and 96 tackles by the safety whom some consider the best in the league.
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Five interceptions and 96 tackles by the safety whom some consider the best in the league. Getty Images

6. Budda Baker, Cardinals:

$14.75 million (59 million over 4 years)

Budda Baker celebrates the Arizona Cardinals' win over the Los Angeles Rams last Sunday.
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Budda Baker celebrates the Arizona Cardinals' win over the Los Angeles Rams last Sunday.Katelyn MulcahyAFP

7. Eddie Jackson, Bears:

$14.6 million ($58.4 million over 4 years)

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Getty Images

8. Kevin Byard, Titans:

$14.1 million ($70.5 million over 5 years)

Aug 14, 2022; Nashville, Tennessee;  Tennessee Titans free safety Kevin Byard (31) runs through drills during a training camp practice at Ascension Saint Thomas Sports Park.
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Aug 14, 2022; Nashville, Tennessee; Tennessee Titans free safety Kevin Byard (31) runs through drills during a training camp practice at Ascension Saint Thomas Sports Park. George Walker IVUSA TODAY Sports

9. Marcus Williams, Ravens:

$14 million ($70 million over 5 years)

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Getty Images

10. Quandre Diggs, Seahawks:

$13 million ($39 million over 3 years)

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