The future for Freeney and Mathis

Len Pasquarelli reports that there are teams converting to the 4-3 that would love to have Dwight Freeney or Robert Mathis as part of their plans:

If the Colts switch to a 3-4 front – a transition that could be dicey given their defensive personnel, but one with which new coach Chuck Pagano is most familiar – Mathis and Freeney are poor fits. Neither has the bulk to play 3-4 end, and neither has played much in space, so the conversion to 3-4 linebacker would be tough.

Indianapolis could reduce Freeney’s cap hit with an extension, but he’s going to be 32 later this month, and how much can a club commit to a player of that vintage, and one who might not fit very snugly with future plans?

There are at least two teams, Miami and Buffalo, switching to the 4-3 in 2012, and both will need ends. Many pro scouts in the league feel that Mathis, who will be 31 in about 2 1/2 weeks, had a stronger performance than did Freeney in 2011. Mathis had 9.5 sacks, his eighth season in a row with at least seven.


Todd Smith

About Todd Smith

Todd Smith is a part-time sportswriter who spends too much time arguing on Twitter. What he really loves is eating poorly and watching football. He got his first Colts t-shirt in 1984 shortly after the Mayflower trucks arrived and has never given up on his hometown team. He also still holds to the belief that Kordell Stewart stepped out of the end zone and thus cheated the Colts.