Tyrann Mathieu has had a stellar NFL career, but it's also been one that's seen him travel a bit. The 29-year-old was initially a third-round pick of the Arizona Cardinals, where he played out his rookie deal before joining the Houston Texans for one year en route to joining the Kansas City Chiefs in 2019. At the time, he signed a three-year, $42 million contract and that means he's entering the final year of that deal in 2021 -- so it's time for he and the Chiefs to potentially begin talks on an extension. The most important player on the roster, namely Patrick Mahomes, is adamant he wants the organization to keep Mathieu onboard for a long time to come.
And make no mistake about it, the former league MVP quite literally means a long time to come.
"He's such a great leader on this team and obviously a special football player," Mahomes said, via NFL.com. "You want him to be here for the long run and you can tell that Chiefs Kingdom is really behind him as the leader of that defense, and a leader on this team. Definitely want him to be here as long as he can and as long as I'm here."
For context, Mahomes' record-setting deal secures him to the Chiefs through 2031. In order to match the expiration of the two contracts, Kansas City would have to offer Mathieu a 10-year extension -- something that's very unlikely to happen. For starters, Mathieu would be 40 years old at the end of said deal and, additionally, Mahomes is the only player in league history to land a contract of that length. Then there's the money that would have to come attached to a decade-long contract and, well, you get the point.
The reality is while Mahomes is being genuine in wanting to see it happen, he likely understands it won't -- but, at minimum, wants the worst-case scenario to be Mathieu landing a multi-year extension of some sort. It's a sentiment shared with the four-time All-Pro safety himself, who made it clear he never wants to put on another uniform.
"Just being here the last couple years, I can't see me wearing any other uniform," Mathieu told media from minicamp. "I think the fans here are amazing. My teammates are amazing. I spoke about the relationship that I have with my coaches.
"And some of these things you can't buy other places. And I'm a guy that's had to start over quite often, so I would like to stay here for sure."
Mathieu is set to earn $14.55 million in base salary in 2021, with an overall cap hit of $19.73 million. If the Chiefs want him around for the "long run," it would behoove them to get an extension done sooner than later -- to potentially structure the new deal in a way that lessens his cap hit for this coming season. As it stands, it appears everyone is on the same page with wanting to continue the highly successful marriage. Just how much longer they remain together, however, remains to be seen.