The Philadelphia Eagles recently released guard Evan Mathis, who is one of the top players at his position in football. He wanted a new contract (he was set to make $5.5 million in 2015) and the Eagles didn't want to give it to him, so they released him.
Given the Indianapolis Colts' need along the offensive line (and particularly at the guard position), plus the fact that general manager Ryan Grigson has deep connections with the Eagles and tends to bring in some former Philly players, many wondered whether the Colts would be interested in signing Mathis.
Yesterday, we mentioned that conflicting reports had emerged regarding the Colts' level of interest in Mathis. WTHR's Bob Kravitz had said earlier in the weekend that he didn't expect the Colts to pursue the guard, while yesterday ESPN's John Clayton listed the Colts among the four teams most interested.
We still don't know for sure which way the Colts are leaning, but another report from an Indianapolis reporter today suggests the Colts aren't going after Mathis. That's according to the Indianapolis Star's Stephen Holder, who wrote this today:
As a team source explained Tuesday, the Colts are not making a push to sign Mathis and it appears unlikely they will reconsider.
As Holder explains, the team's reasoning is this: they want to develop their young talent, such as the talent already there along their offensive line. They brought in several veterans this offseason and so they know that they will need to replace them at some point soon, so they want to develop the young talent and don't want to add another veteran. This is a similar sentiment to the one that Kravitz expressed the other day, as he noted that he had been told the Colts don't want another older player.
Mathis would absolutely help the Colts in the short-term, and with their goal being to win the Super Bowl this year, there's little doubt that adding Mathis would very much help them in that pursuit. But with Todd Herremans already projected to start at one of the guard spots, bringing Evan Mathis in at the other spot would leave younger guys as backups. That's not something the Colts want, as they want to cultivate the talent they have and build a foundation for the future as well.
Ideally, that sounds like a good plan, as you'd obviously rather have a long-term answer along the line than a short-term answer. Hopefully, the plan doesn't backfire and hurt the Colts' chances of winning this year. Either way, though, it is certainly looking like the Colts are not interested in Evan Mathis.