The Philadelphia Eagles have re-signed their left guard, Evan Mathis, to a five year contract. The two sides have agreed to terms on a deal that is worth $25 million with a $7 million guarantee. Mathis had recently drawn some interest in the free agent market after some of the more notable players (namely Carl Nicks and Ben Grubbs) signed very early in the free agency period. Shortly after the deal was finalized, Mathis tweeted “To all the Eagles fans who offered me various food and incentives to return…I’ve come to collect. #FLY”.
Mathis had recently visited the Baltimore Ravens, but Philadelphia was obviously never out of the running to bring him back. He was originally signed by the Eagles last year to a one year contract and was expected to be a backup. However, it was evident very early that Mathis was going to thrive in the system implemented by offensive line coach Howard Mudd. By the end of the season, Mathis was widely considered to be one of the most underrated linemen in the league.
Philadelphia is generally not a team to engage in bidding wars with other organizations in order to sign a player. I have felt all along that this was a signing the Eagles needed to make happen. With the success the Eagles saw in the running game last year, allowing LeSean McCoy to run roughshod over the competition on his way to franchise records and a Pro-Bowl, the team needed to maintain the continuity of the line. With additional time to work as a unit under line coach Howard Mudd, this group should make even bigger strides in 2012.
In the end, the Eagles did offer more money than the Ravens, but Mathis has to be aware that without the Eagles organization and line coach Howard Mudd, there is a good chance his career may not have been resurrected.