Former Philadelphia Eagles guard Evan Mathis has been a free agent for almost a month, with plenty of teams linked to the two-time Pro Bowl selection, but no deals being reached. The Miami Dolphins, one of the teams that need a guard and have an offensive system that should perfectly match Mathis' talents, continue to be rumored among the possible landing spots for Mathis, though, according to the guard, system is not a major factor in where he will finally decide to sign.
"Scheme actually is lower on the priority list for me because I feel like I can play in any scheme," Mathis told The Doug Gottlieb Show this week. "But you're measuring the contract, you're measuring the coaches, the contender aspect. Geographical location is kind of on there, but I think the other factors are a little more important."
Mathis also realizes, there really is no rush for him to join a team right now. NFL franchises will start reporting to training camp in the next couple of weeks, at which point performance levels or injuries to currently signed guards will make Mathis' talent even more of a commodity.
"I was released on June 11. So to become a free agent right at the end of OTAs and minicamps - and, more importantly, right at the beginning of the only pretty much dead period in the NFL when the teams, players, executives and everyone is taking their vacations - we're waiting and they're waiting. There's no point in signing. I haven't missed anything.
"There's no rush at all, and we still have a good week-and-a-half, two weeks before most training camps get started. The teams have been patient just as we have, so there's really been no point in rushing to get anything done. So exactly what my options are aren't as clear as they will be in a week or two."
The Dolphins are currently using a combination of Dallas Thomas, Billy Turner, and rookie Jamil Douglas to man the two guard positions. The coaches are saying all the right things about the team's reliance on the young players at the spot, but bringing in a veteran, Pro Bowl caliber guard has to be a consideration. Will the Dolphins end up with Mathis, who had a brief seven-game stint in South Florida in 2008? Mathis is not in a rush to decide, but we may finally have an answer over the next couple of weeks.