He’s not dead to us, but he’s with the Saints now, so we should pause to reflect.
While not the most unusual departure from the team in the Reid era, the end of the road here was rather jarring, considering Mathieu’s tweet about how he’d have taken the incoming Reid’s contract to stay. That’s confounded by his previous comment about not being replaceable. That makes it sound like he was threatening to leave, but actually wanted to stay, so what gives?
We can only guess, of course, so that’s what I’m going to do, with a little home-brewed psychology stirred in for flavor. Taking what Mathieu’s said as honest(-ish, but if you assume dishonesty, you can’t learn anything from what’s been said, and dishonesty still becomes apparent during evaluation), my guess is that he was pushing for a fatter contract and overplayed his hand.
That’s not a given, though, as I’m sure he understood that we are cap-strapped (An old, well-respected technical term that I just made up), so it might also have been a communication breakdown. In my experience, a lot of problems come down to unspoken assumptions, i.e. not being anywhere on the same page.
In fact, the part where he said he’d have signed for what Reid got kind of suggests a “I thought you knew!” in the equation. Of course, that still might not be it. Spags may have decided that he wanted to change the attitude of his DB corps, and one way to do that is to replace their leader with a leader who will lead in the direction you want them to go. This makes some sense, because Spags couldn’t say to Mathieu that he wants him to stay, but to do everything differently.
So perhaps, while I doubt it was the determining factor and Veach was “negotiating” in bad faith, it had an impact on how valuable he was in KC’s system. As in, ‘we’ll keep you, but only at the right price’. Which also makes sense in terms of a communication breakdown, given the subtleties of contract negotiations.
But those are my thoughts, what are yours?