The Colts announced a series of roster moves today, including the signings of one player to the 53-man roster and a pair of players to the practice squad. However, the most notable of the team’s Tuesday transactions is a contract extension for edge defender and pass rusher Robert Mathis, whose deal has been extended through the 2016 season.
In addition to locking up Mathis for an additional year, the Colts have also signed defensive back Jalil Brown to their active roster. The two openings on the club’s practice squad have been filled by wide receiver Chandler Jones and inside linebacker Rob Ruggiero.
Mathis was reinstated from his suspension following Indianapolis’ Week 4 win over the Jaguars, but rather than being moved to the active roster, the veteran defender was placed on the reserve/non-football injury list. The 33-year-old tore his Achilles while working out away from the club, which means he wasn’t necessarily entitled to his 2014 salary. However, according to Albert Breer of the NFL Network (via Twitter), Mathis is still receiving his full ’14 salary, while the new deal tacks on a $6MM salary for 2016.
As Breer explains (via Twitter), the one-year extension essentially represents a team option for 2016, with Mathis doing a favor for Indianapolis in exchange for receiving his salary this season. It’s not clear if the extension also reduces Mathis’ $10.75MM cap hit for 2015 at all.
As for Brown, he saw action on special teams and occasionally on defense for the Chiefs in 2011 and 2012, but didn’t see the field much last season during his time with the Colts and Dolphins. No corresponding move is necessary to add Brown to the 53-man roster, since the Colts had placed Mario Harvey on injured reserve earlier this week and had an opening. The club should also have room for another addition this week, with LaRon Landry heading to the reserve/suspended list.