The two-time defending AFC Champion Kansas City Chiefs have tough decisions to make money-wise as the 2021 season gets moving along. One player that they are still very much interested in having on their roster is All-Pro safety Tyrann Mathieu.
Tuesday it came out that finally the Seattle Seahawks and veteran safety Jamal Adams were able to come to terms on a four-year, $70 million extension, and Mathieu watched that situation with a close eye.
The 29-year-old, back-to-back All-Pro safety enters his third and final season with the Chiefs, Mathieu is slated to make a base salary of $14.55 million. However, Adams’ big payday likely means that Mathieu can ask for much more in a new deal.
Mathieu is a playmaker who deserves a new deal, and Chiefs GM Brett Veach told SiriusXM NFL Radio on Tuesday that the franchise is going to do whatever it can to keep him.
Money is a major dividing point for the Chiefs and the safety, and it sounds like Veach is going to have to talk ownership into coming up with some cash to make the safety happy long term.
“We’ve had a chance to talk to Tyrann and his representation, and I think it’s a little bit difficult with the landscape right now of having two cap-shortened offseason and where we are in regards to our offseason projections,” Veach stated on SiriusXM NFL Radio.
“But as we’ve discussed with Tyrann and his crew, it’s one of those situations that where we are now will certainly not be where we are once the season ends, and once we correct some of the things when you have extensions, conversations, trades, (players) move on — every team is certainly in a different position (with) what their books say than (what) they will be in the offseason.
“And we like to think that we’re going to find a way to get this done. And he knows we love him, and we know he wants to be here. And right now, for him, and for us, I think it’s just a timing thing. But there’s not a guy in this league I respect as much as him for the way he goes about his business.
“And, you know, listen, a lot of these guys, and a lot of these teams — I think we saw the franchise tag period come and go, and no one got done. And there have been a couple of deals, but a lot of these bigger deals haven’t been done for the same reason. Different players handle it in a different way. And just like you’d expect from Tyrann, just complete class. I mean, the guy is special. We love him. And we’re certainly going to work our tail off to keep him here.”
Kansas City has pushed the envelope cash wise for the upcoming season, meaning it might not be that easy to get Mathieu a new deal done soon. Right now, the Chiefs have four players who will count for $20-plus million next year on the cap: superstar QB Patrick Mahomes ($35.8 million), Chris Jones ($29.4 million), Frank Clark ($26.3 million), and Tyreek Hill ($20.7 million). So they’ll have to shift some money around if they want to keep Mathieu too.
Mathieu is a leader on the defense for the Chiefs, and it’ll be interesting to see what type of money the team can free up to get him a new deal.