After hearing conflicting reports for the past week, the Colts have finally locked up Robert Mathis for a long term deal this afternoon. Last week, Bob Kravitz reported that talks between the two parties were “warming up,” but later reports claimed that no negotiations had yet to take place.
Earlier today, Adam Schefter tweeted the following:
Colts trying to sign DE Robert Mathis to a new deal but if they can’t, they told him they will use franchise tag on him by today’s deadline.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) March 5, 2012
Right before the 4 PM deadline, it was released that the Colts had franchised Mathis, but that the two sides were close to a new deal.
20 minutes later, Mike Chappell of the Indy Star and Anthony Calhoun of WISH-TV both confirmed the agreement of a new deal.
First the tag, then more. Colts and Robert Mathis have agreed on long-term deal. Good for both sides.
— Mike Chappell (@mchappell51) March 5, 2012
BREAKING: The #Colts announce they have reached a long term deal withRobert Mathis…more tonight at 5pm on WISHTV.
— Anthony Calhoun (@ACwishtv) March 5, 2012
This is great news for the Colts’ defense, and for Coach Pagano, who has gushed repeatedly over Mathis and Dwight Freeney. Mathis will likely transition to more of a stand-up, outside linebacker role, but it all depends on how the new defense shapes up.
The Colts now turn their attention to Pierre Garcon, Reggie Wayne, and the other 16 unrestricted free agents. Who should be next?
Mike Chappell updated us with contract details:
Colts ponied up for Robert Mathis. 4 years, $36 million, $15 SB. $17 mill in 1st year, $24 mill in 2nd year. Next dinner’s on #98.
— Mike Chappell (@mchappell51) March 6, 2012
So, Mathis will receive $17 million in his first year, and will have received $24 million by the end of his second year. The cap situation then, looks something like this: $2 million base salary in 2012 plus 1/4th of the signing bonus (3.75), making it a $5.75 million hit on the 2012 cap. That’s a great deal for a premier pass rusher. The 2013 cap number would be $10.75 million, as Mathis would receive a $7 million base, plus the prorated signing bonus.