Chiefs GM Brett Veach provides update on Tyrann Mathieu extension talks

Kansas City Chiefs GM Brett Veach spoke on Sirius XM NFL Radio on Tuesday, live from training camp in St. Joseph, Missouri.

During the interview, Veach provided an update on one of the biggest storylines surrounding the team this offseason — a potential extension for Chiefs star safety Tyrann Mathieu. 2021 is the final year of Mathieu’s original three-year contract with Kansas City.

While Veach confirmed that there have been talks of an extension with Mathieu’s representation, his comments also suggested that there’s a reason an extension hasn’t happened yet. The reason being that the Chiefs simply can’t afford to extend Mathieu at this time.

“Yeah and we’ve had a chance to talk to Tyrann (Mathieu) and his representation,” Veach said. “I think it’s a little difficult with the landscape right now of having two cap-shortened offseasons and where we are in terms of our offseason projections. But as we’ve discussed with Tyrann and his crew, it’s one of those situations that, where we are now will certainly not be where we are once the season ends. Once we correct some of these things — when you have extensions, conversions, trades, moves on — every team is certainly in a different position now, what their books say, as they will be in the offseason.”

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That sure sounds like salary cap constraints are currently holding the team back from signing Mathieu to an extension right now. Seahawks safety Jamal Adams just reset the market at the position in a big way. According to the NFLPA’s public salary cap report, the Chiefs currently have just $7.6 million in cap space available. For sake of comparison, the team took $7.03 million in cap space into the 2020 NFL season. While an extension could be used to create more cap space — that’s not always the case and Veach’s stance seems to suggest that’s what’s happening here.

Veach did, however, seem optimistic that moves made following the season should change the outlook. Things like other extensions, contract conversions, trades and cuts could free the requisite cap space to make a deal possible. The goal remains to sign Mathieu to a long-term contract extension.

“We like to think we’re going to find a way to get this done,” Veach said. “He knows we love him and we know he wants to be here. Right now — for us and for him — I think it’s just a timing thing. But there’s not a guy in this league that I respect as much as him for the way he goes about his business. Listen, a lot of these guys — a lot of these teams — we saw the franchise tag period come and go and no (contracts) got done. There have been a couple of deals, but a lot of these bigger deals haven’t been done for the same reason. Different players handle it in a different way and just like you’d expect from Tyrann, just complete class. The guy’s special, we love him and we’re certainly going to work our tail off to keep him here.”

There’s a clear desire from both sides to get a deal done, but a lot can happen between now and the next offseason. With other contract extensions also necessary, the Chiefs might need to get creative with their accounting in order to retain their defensive star.


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