Evan Mathis Has Signed A One-Year Deal With The Arizona Cardinals

Say goodbye to another 2015 starter.

Offensive guard Evan Mathis has signed a one-year, $6 million deal with the Arizona Cardinals, per multiple reports. 

https://twitter.com/MikeKlis/status/710189345014026240

Mathis came to the Denver Broncos in August of 2015, right before the start of the regular season. Denver's plan was to start him at left guard. 

Mathis seemed like he'd be the perfect fit for Gary Kubiak's zone blocking system. Smart, athletic, quick. It was a last-minute signing by John Elway

However, Mathis got off to a slow start and battled injuries through most of the season. He rotated with rookie Max Garcia frequently, especially down the stretch and into the playoffs. 

A former All-Pro, the only thing missing from Mathis' NFL resume was a World Championship. His time in Denver remedied that.

This isn't a huge loss for Denver. Mathis is 34 years old and his 2015 campaign made it plain that his best years are behind him.

The Broncos are high on Garcia. But after releasing right guard Louis Vasquez, they're currently thin at guard. 

They also have Robert Myers and Sam Brenner on the roster and will likely pull from the college ranks in the upcoming NFL Draft to solidify their interior O-line depth.

If the Broncos and Ryan Clady are able to agree on a contract restructuring, that would leave four tackles on the roster — Clady, Michael SchofieldTy Sambrailo and resent free agent signing Donald Stephenson

It's conceivable that one of these guys could be asked to kick inside. If that happens, Sambrailo is the most likely candidate. 

With all the losses the Broncos have sustained via free agency this year, and the premium contracts being signed by the likes of Malik Jackson and Brock Osweiler, Denver can expect to be awarded a grip of compensatory draft picks in 2017. 

Update

With the news that the Broncos signed Russell Okung to a five-year deal on Thursday, the likelihood that Sambrailo or Schofield will be asked to kick inside to guard just skyrocketed. 

Chad Jensen is the Publisher of Mile High Huddle. You can find him on Twitter @ChadNJensen.

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