Jordan Matthews’ forgettable one-year stint in Buffalo allowed the New England Patriots to sign the wide receiver to a seriously team-friendly deal.
Matthews’ contract with the Patriots is a one-year, $1 million pact that includes just $170,000 in guaranteed money, according to Albert Breer of The MMQB. Matthews can earn an additional $700,000 in unspecified incentives.
That’s an incredible bargain for New England, which signed running back Jeremy Hill to a similarly affordable deal (one year, up to $1.5 million with $150,000 guaranteed) last month.
Matthews’ one season with the Bills was a dud — he missed six games with injuries and finished with just 25 catches for 282 yards and one touchdown — but he was a key contributor for the Philadelphia Eagles from 2014 to 2016. A second-round draft pick in 2014, Matthews recorded at least 67 catches and at least 800 receiving yards in each of his three seasons with Philly, totaling 225 receptions for 2,673 yards and 19 touchdowns during that span.
With Brandin Cooks and Danny Amendola both leaving New England this offseason, Matthews projects as the Patriots’ new No. 3 receiver behind Julian Edelman and Chris Hogan given his slot experience and previous production. If he can follow in Hogan’s footsteps and flourish after leaving Buffalo, his contract will look like a steal.
And if Matthews, who turns 26 in July, isn’t a fit in New England or can’t separate himself from the squadron of other wideouts on the roster, the Patriots can cut him with no financial penalty. Win-win.
After trading Cooks, who is set to make $8.5 million this season, to the Los Angeles Rams and signing Matthews, the Patriots currently have 10 wide receivers under contract: Edelman, Hogan, Matthews, Phillip Dorsett, Malcolm Mitchell, Kenny Britt, Cordarrelle Patterson, Riley McCarron, Cody Hollister and special teams captain Matthew Slater.
All 10 players are set to earn $3 million or less this season, with Edelman boasting the highest total salary cap hit at $4.2 million — the 54th-highest among NFL receivers.