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Mathieu Comments on Talks with Cardinals
Thursday, March 17
Mathieu discussed the situation during an appearance on PFT Live (h/t ProFootballTalk's Mike Florio):
I truly believe deep down in my heart that something will get done. It’s not one of those things that’s easy. It’s going to take a little bit of time. I don’t necessarily have a true position, so there’s different things that go into it.
It’s gonna be kind of a wrestling match but at the end of the day as long as we understand it’s a business and as long as we take care of our relationships I think it’ll be all right. But like I said I’m not really focused on the contract side of things it’s more about me getting healthy and really trying to dominate next year.
Keim Comments on Mathieu Negotiations
Wednesday, Feb. 24
“We’ve made our goal clear, which is to re-sign him to a long-term deal,” Cardinals general manager Steve Keim said, per Darren Urban of AZCardinals.com. “Yet at the same time, there are always obstacles in negotiations so we’ll see where it goes.”
On Feb. 20, Keim indicated conversations are ongoing about a long-term deal with Mathieu, noting he's "still certainly someone they're focusing on," per James Palmer of NFL Network.
Mathieu Comments on Future with Cardinals
Monday, Feb. 15
"We're both eager, we're both interested. I want to spend the rest of my career here. The biggest thing is getting my knee right, rehabbing and being ready for 2016," Mathieu said on Saturday, according to Mike Jurecki of FoxSports910.com.
“Obviously, I love this team, I love this locker room, I love the coaching staff, upper management,” Mathieu said on Jan. 25, via Darren Urban of the team's official website. “I think this is the perfect place for me. I wouldn’t mind spending the rest of my life here.”
Cardinals Want to Lock Up Mathieu to Long-Term Deal
Sunday, Jan. 24
The Cardinals will prioritize signing Mathieu to a contract extension this offseason, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL.com. This is despite Mathieu still having a year left on his deal.
"Expect him to be among the highest-paid safeties in the NFL when it’s all said and done," Rapoport added, per NFL Media on Twitter.
Mathieu Has Emerged as Premier Safety For Cardinals
Keim told Jay Glazer of Fox Sports in late November that re-signing Mathieu was one of the team's "biggest priorities," per Rotoworld, so this latest report comes as little surprise.
Mathieu, 23, finished the 2015 season with 89 tackles, five interceptions, one sack and one forced fumble in 14 games.
His versatility has made him one of the top defensive backs in the league. He has the rare ability to play as a traditional free safety or line up in the slot and provide man coverage against smaller, quicker receivers. That allows the Cardinals a lot of scheme versatility, depending on the team they are facing, and has made Mathieu one of the most indispensable defensive backs in the NFL.
It's also made him one of the best defensive players in football in 2015, making the torn ACL he suffered in December a major blow for the Arizona defense. Despite the injury, though, it appears Mathieu's long-term security with the Cardinals is all but assured.