- Rapoport adds that the Cardinals will likely make Mathieu the highest paid safety in the NFL.
This isn’t the first we’ve heard about the Cardinals wanting to lock up Mathieu to a long-term deal. GM Steve Keim told Jay Glazer of FOX Sports a few months ago (via Mike Jurecki) that signing Mathieu long-term was one their “biggest priorities.”
Unfortunately for him, he suffered a season-ending ACL injury towards the end of the season.
Mathieu, 23, is a former third-round pick of the Cardinals back in 2013, who has quickly become an impact player for one of the best defensive units in the NFL.
Mathieu will be entering the final year of his four-year, $3.052 million rookie contract that included $817,187 guaranteed. He’ll make a base salary of $675,000 in 2016.
In 2015, Mathieu appeared in 14 games and recorded 89 tackles, a sack, five interceptions with one being returned for a touchdown, a forced fumble and 16 pass defenses for the Cardinals. Pro Football Focus has him rated as the No. 1 cornerback out of 111 qualifying players.