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Mathis Contract

Forgot to include this in the earlier post.

Mathis's 1 yr vet minimum deal came with no bonus - obviously in this case - and he could earn $520,000 if he makes it all 17 paychecks. The deal is "split" which means it has provisions that would allow the Skins to pay him less should he be placed on IR.

For those of you who believed DJ Hackett would have been the best solution to the Skins search for a young, tall receiver (or at least believed he was a talent worthy of at least a legit offer), here are the numbers on his deal, too:

Hackett got $750,000 to sign, the only guaranteed money in his two year deal. He could earn a max of $3.5 million over those two years.

By Jason La Canfora  |  April 7, 2008; 4:52 PM ET
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Posted by: Anonymous | April 7, 2008 4:56 PM | Report abuse

Again, not sure Mathis even MAKES the team coming out of camp....

Posted by: Greg(Boston) | April 7, 2008 4:59 PM | Report abuse

I was so articulate while the blog was broken.

Now that I can comment...hmmmm.?


Posted by: Stumped | April 7, 2008 5:16 PM | Report abuse

Maybe they had to sign Mathis to keep themselves from going after Pacman.

whew! Glad I had that chocolate cake, so now I don't have to have that jelly doughnut.

Posted by: Stumped | April 7, 2008 5:18 PM | Report abuse


Posted by: Stumped | April 7, 2008 5:20 PM | Report abuse

We are 19 days away from the draft, people, and we are debating whether Jerome Mathis was a good signing. He signed a 1-year, vet minimum deal. We didn't trade away draft picks for him, or offer a ton of guaranteed money. Unless you feel the Mathis acquistion will trigger a Betts trade before draft day, this is a non-story.

Posted by: Matt | April 7, 2008 5:21 PM | Report abuse

Do we have to go back and change that page on the Wiki, the one that related who really were (before) to who we had to be (after)? Maybe we can just change the headings -- before to after and vice versa.

Posted by: talent evaluator | April 7, 2008 5:23 PM | Report abuse

Hey Jason, congrats on your Pulitzer. After all those long days, you earned it.

Posted by: AL | April 7, 2008 5:27 PM | Report abuse

On the Mathis signing, Jason, hit the nail on the head. Gibbs restored a 'team-first ethos' (whatever ethos is). Mathis just doesn't seem like a fit unless the Skins are trading away someone (Rock). But Mathis, unreliable due to injuries, hardly looks like a replacement for Rock, so why bother.

Also, I liked that post for another reason ... one paragraph decribes a guy charged with possession of pot, and in the next, talks about team chemistry ... does it get any better??

Posted by: AL | April 7, 2008 5:30 PM | Report abuse

Again, not sure Mathis even MAKES the team coming out of camp....

Posted by: Greg(Boston) | April 7, 2008 4:59 PM

I'm not sure whether he can even get both legs in his uniform without pulling his hammie. Or whether he can even fly to Washington without choking the flight attendant.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 7, 2008 5:30 PM | Report abuse

dang, what happened to the registration/login thing. I was getting used to Zeke

Posted by: AL | April 7, 2008 5:30 PM | Report abuse

I feel like I can be whoever I want to be ... but I am not 4th

Posted by: 4th | April 7, 2008 5:31 PM | Report abuse

What I gather is that the skins have brought in a player who could at best provide a dynamic spark to our return game or at worst cost us nada.

We did not sign the guy who we would have had to guarantee $$ to. Obviously the new HC wasn't impressed enough to bring Hackett in and if Zorn didn't think guaranteeing money to him was worth it, neither do I.

This is small potatoes ... please find some actual news to report on/post about sir

Posted by: JLC_Complains_a_Lot | April 7, 2008 5:32 PM | Report abuse

I'm not this guy either ... dang ... I feel like such a dumb kid

Posted by: dcsween | April 7, 2008 5:33 PM | Report abuse

If Jasno is not just being negative, can someone please explain the below comment. I have tried to find out what exactly Mathis has done to be regarded as a bad person. I DO NOT CONDONE VIOLENCE against women and he needs to be called on, I believe the charges filed were choking, not hitting (semantics), if that is true. However, I do not think he allowed his dogs out of the property. I have had dogs my whole life and sometimes they get out.

From what I can find on the web, the dog issue and the charges against his common law wife are the only things I have been able to find.

So, why the first comment about his entire rap sheet. To me, this is his entire rap sheet.

I'm not going to rehash this character's entire rap sheet, but here's a brief primer:

In February Mathis - a smaller receiver who has been hurt recently and is in no way better than Reche Caldwell. Who the Skins lowballed - was jailed and charged with assault and family violence for an alleged attack on his pregnant girlfriend (charges were later dropped at her request after she moved to another state).

He was cited for allowing pit pulls to escape from his property in Houston in December.

Posted by: Kerzon417 | April 7, 2008 5:34 PM | Report abuse

Wow, I can even borrow "The Name". The big cheese of this blog.

Posted by: TheCindy | April 7, 2008 5:34 PM | Report abuse

OK, enough name borrowing for now. It was fun for a couple minutes ... I'm done now.

Posted by: AL | April 7, 2008 5:35 PM | Report abuse

I like when I forget to type in my name and am nobody. There have been a lot of nobodies up here.

Zeke is AL? Wow. Going to be a tough few days up here getting it all straight.

Posted by: talent evaluator | April 7, 2008 5:37 PM | Report abuse

OK, now I have become negative. SJK!

Is OK to talk about the Kansas St. receiver again?? I really like him. Here is a highlight video of him doing everything except throwing to himself!

Posted by: Kerzon417 | April 7, 2008 5:39 PM | Report abuse

Its me TE, but is it you?

Posted by: AL | April 7, 2008 5:40 PM | Report abuse

Hey to be honest...i think using this signing to then go and trade betts... who i like a lot but is just being completely wasted, would not be a bad idea... betts is a decent rb and could bring us back a few draft picks or coupled with a draft pick could bring us a decent player (Chad Johnson anyone). Now I'm not saying this is the best idea or even a good idea, im just saying it makes sense, because EVERYONE knows that Synder wants Mr. Johnson in a Skins uniform next year... Maybe even bring in a cornerback (Lito Sheppard or Pacman????) Just saying that this signing may allow us to use him as a return man and get rid of betts.... who knows...

Posted by: Ben | April 7, 2008 5:41 PM | Report abuse

Oh, good grief.

Posted by: Nate in the PDX | April 7, 2008 5:42 PM | Report abuse

Kerzon417, as usual, I completely agree with you. This is JLC making something out of nothing. Apparently, if you flood his email inbox with a question he will address it on this blog (so he has claimed). So I suggest we email him asking him to provide some real information about the draft! Who are the Skins looking at? Who has worked for them? Is Vinny making all of the calls, or do Blache, Zorn, and Snyder have a bit of a say?

Posted by: Matt | April 7, 2008 5:44 PM | Report abuse

So you propose having Rock as RB2 then? Yes, that sounds like a terrific idea.

Also, who is giving up multiple draft picks for Ladell Betts? Nobody. We can't trade with ourselves and that's about the only team that would consider such a deal.

We could trade Betts for at best a 6th and then we'd have to burn a 3rd or 4th to find another RB to play behind CP. This does not make trading Betts any more of a possibility than it ever was, sorry.

Posted by: JLC_Complains_a_Lot | April 7, 2008 5:44 PM | Report abuse

Ok JLac...

This is getting assanine! All of this in not news!!! Hackett may or may not do well for Jacksonville, but obviously they were not bowled over with him. They said they will address the WR slot in the draft. Isn't this what we said they should start doing???

Mathis is fast and hell and is low risk maybe high reward. He wasn't convicted or even charged. He wasn't fighting dogs nor did they attack anyone!

My black lab got out the other day...I've got character issues.

Posted by: sicwidit | April 7, 2008 5:46 PM | Report abuse


Real news about the Redskins and the draft? Why didn't I think of that? Why didn't Jasno? I'm still trying to work out a really clever nickname for Vinny so I can win that contest he was sponsoring last week. First prize was to help him pack and move to his new home, I think.

Posted by: talent evaluator | April 7, 2008 5:47 PM | Report abuse

I like Ladell Betts, but if they trade him for a better player that they can get that can contribute now or a mid level draft pick, I say go for it. The Skins will not make or lose the Super Bowl without Betts.

Posted by: sicwidit | April 7, 2008 5:48 PM | Report abuse

Wait really? You dont see a team out there giving us more than a 6th for betts? I see him as a 4th at worst... he had only 1 real opportunity...playing for a team without a passing game 2 years ago and ran for 1,000 yards... now i mean im not saying hes great but betts would garner attention if we made him available... LOTS of teams have rb issues.. and would want betts... and besides ROCK wants more carries and i think he could be a serviceable #2... betts had a total of 93 carries last year... i think rock can handle that...

Posted by: Ben | April 7, 2008 5:48 PM | Report abuse

Here is a nice (positive) article on the Z-man:

The Zorn Identity: Why Jim Zorn Might Be Great

These days it seems that sports fans, news mediums and the general populace are in need of legends. We give our favorite athletes and entertainers labels such as "great" or "legendary" sometimes before they've proven anything.

Let's be honest, we do this because it adds an element of fun and most of us enjoy tracking the progressions of our heroes. Many of them will fly under the radar and are acknowledged only after years of success. Jim Zorn, the new Head Coach of the Washington Redskins has the opportunity to do just that.

Since Zorn has arrived he's been active in determining which prospects would be the best fit for the current roster. He's spoken highly of his predecessor, Joe Gibbs and has become an active participant in accessing player's skills.

Zorn told former Seahawk receiver D.J. Hackett he'd like to have him for the right price but wouldn't over-pay for him. He also recently placed a collage of Sean Taylor's pictures in his office, which shows he's establishing a connection with Redskin community. He's even alluded to giving unheralded players like receiver Anthony Mix playing time instead of letting him waste away on the bench.

Forgive me if this comes off as premature but Zorn seems to be moving in the right direction and has the preliminary makings of a great coach. There goes that word again, "great".

I've fully taken into account that saying this could make me appear to be either a genius or a goat. However, based on what I've seen thus far, it's certainly worth the risk. Zorn hasn't had the opportunity to do much at this point of the offseason but the few things he's had an opportunity to do all seem to be correct.
Later this month at the Washington Redskin's annual draft day party, Zorn will address the fans at Fed Ex Field. It will be interesting to hear what he has to say. Will he try to remain politically correct and say all the right things? Or will he continue the trend he's already started and speak the truth? I'm positive that the latter scenario would be welcomed by all Redskins' fans.
Some of my readers may be wondering why we should get excited about Zorn so quickly. What he's done so far is actually very simplistic, however, it's a-typical of the quandary the Skins have been in since '93.So with that said, let's sit back and enjoy watching Zorn's identity unfold. Zorn may never be a legend, but if he ever is, just remember who told you first.
Hail to the Redskins!

Posted by: Kerzon417 | April 7, 2008 5:51 PM | Report abuse

If we can get a draft choice for Betts or help us to upgrade the through a trade, I say we should. I would love to see Mason get a chance at #2RB. This may have some reason behind the vet min. offered to Rock.

Posted by: Kerzon417 | April 7, 2008 5:54 PM | Report abuse

just saying... rock isn't a bad back... hes shifty and smart sees the holes and doesn't wait to hit them... all we need him to do is run what 5 times a game to spell portis... plus we package betts and maybe a 3rd rounder this year and 2nd rounder next year i see us landing Chad... maybe even less if his big mouth stays open... maybe not worth it but with Chad we can address the dline in the 1st round and really see how good this team can be... Chad by the way IS not a distraction on or off the field... he celebrates and catches balls... hes upset with the bengals for sucking now and that is why he is complaning... put him on a decent team keep him happy by throwing to him and winning...which we should be able to do and hes a happy guy... just saying I'd be down for that trade

Posted by: ben | April 7, 2008 5:55 PM | Report abuse


Don't borrow the names of others. It ain't right.

Do have fun making up names or doing satirical comments (hence, Not Guy, Miss Teen, etc get a pass).

End NEtiquette comment.

Posted by: Stumped | April 7, 2008 5:55 PM | Report abuse

Hey, who 'borrowed' my name? And why is no one wearing underwear? I leave for one hour and chaos erupts.

Posted by: The Real Cindy | April 7, 2008 5:55 PM | Report abuse

Also, don't get too used to this freedom; it may not last.

Posted by: The Real Cindy | April 7, 2008 5:56 PM | Report abuse

I'm coming back.

Posted by: Registration | April 7, 2008 4:21 PM

told ya so.

Posted by: Registration | April 7, 2008 5:58 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: Stumped | April 7, 2008 5:59 PM | Report abuse

Really by the way...what is the purpose of having betts on the roster... both gibbs and saunders said that we would have a 2 headed rb this year with both portis and betts getting carries and as i already said betts had 93 so that didnt happen. If we can get something for him why not do it? He isn't helping the team with his 355 yards and 1 td last year is he? He doesn't even return kicks anymore as Rock is better at it. I see no point to wasting his talent in Washington anymore even though I do like the kid. He has potential i think to be a starting rb in this league and thus i think we should take advantage of that and make our team better by shoring up one of our needs, either wr, dl or cb... otherwise i think hes just wasting away on our bench...

Posted by: Ben | April 7, 2008 6:00 PM | Report abuse

i don't think this signing is anything to be worried about... lots of vets cut in camp, he'll most likely be one of them.

if we do make a big trade/contract deal, the guy i'd want is Roy Williams from Detroit. Guy is a monster... size, athleticism, etc. Too rich for Lions to re-sign with Calvin Johnson (who i think can void in a couple of years and get another payday).

Posted by: beat cal | April 7, 2008 6:01 PM | Report abuse

Excerpt from article.

Draft Analysis: Dennis Dixon, QB, Oregon Ducks

Expected Draft PlacementThe tear to his ACL will cost Dixon millions as he more than likely will drop to being a second-day draft pick. He has all the physical attributes to be a two-way threat at quarterback in the NFL; however, his success might come as a shifty, trick-play wide receiver similar to Washington Redskins wide receiver Antwaan Randle El. The Redskins in fact are one of the teams he has talked to, and they could take him as a late-round flier in the event quarterback Jason Campbell does not pan out. Expect him to go near the fifth round come April.

Posted by: Kerzon417 | April 7, 2008 6:04 PM | Report abuse

But Mathis, unreliable due to injuries, hardly looks like a replacement for Rock, so why bother.

Two words: "Camp Fodder"

Hy, if this shows up as Mr. Fusterbluster, you REALLY can sign in as anyone.

Posted by: Mr. Fusterbluster | April 7, 2008 6:07 PM | Report abuse

sure you are

Posted by: The Real Cindy | April 7, 2008 6:15 PM | Report abuse

Are we really still talking about:

- janso being anti-skins? So tired, boring, misguided, embarressingly homer...

- over the weekend Janso was lame b/c he didnt write about Mathis? no he is b/c he did? Can we make up our minds?

- Trading Betts...this has only been debated about 15,643 times.......

- That mathis isnt a thug? Now that he is a skin lets polish up that record huh?!?!

- equating sex parties to hurting pregnant ladies is just silly....put it this way would you have wanted to be at Smoots loveboat party...YES....would you have wanted to hurt pregnant signifigant others NO....

I thought breaking down possible 8th round centers was boring....but please bring back the Mel Kiper wannabees!!!!!!

Posted by: ChRiS LArrY | April 7, 2008 6:17 PM | Report abuse


HI I'm Skippy and I have a Metal Plate in my head. I live in a Doublewide with my cat Fetchit, and Mama, near Floyd who lives in a Peterbilt cab. I really really really like Lemnon Meringue Pie.

Skippy also has his own wedsite now, ( which is where he profundicates by answering questions of which he are asked, or of which he makes up.

Skippy just started it so he gelded the lilly with the goiter question but if you have to ask something or other Ask Skippy at

Skippy thinks the Redskims should continue the First Rounc tradition of drafting a receiver who can't catch anything more constipated than a cold, preferably that Lime-as$ Sweedish, the tall drink of water from the university of Dubya.

Second round choice should either be a linebacker with a bad knee or a DT with a bad back. There are two third round choices to be squattered, so Skippy recommends one be traded for an RB who can't run, the other for a WR who can be re-signed for an obscene amount of money he wont urn.

The lower round choices take care of themselfs. Skippy suggests a QB who'll later join his brother with the Bengals or a center with a smallish package.



Posted by: SKIPPY! | April 7, 2008 6:22 PM | Report abuse

beep beep (hockey etc. stuff)

Posted by: Anonymous | April 7, 2008 6:22 PM | Report abuse

Pasted this from the orginal Mathis blog- I don't think anyone is looking over there anymore anyways...

I think this is a little over the top from
our fearless lead blogger. The guy is VERY dispensable given the minimum he was brought in for - where is the real harm?

Looks to me like a decision has been made to get ARE away from returning punts or kickoffs (though he did little of the latter). I have absolutely NO problem with that, considering,
A. ARE wasn't very good returning punts last year anyway, what with all the dancing, and
B. We are thin at WR. Do we really need what at the moment is our 2nd best WR playing the most dangerous position in football?

In regards to Cartwright, yes, he was effective returning kickoffs...but IMHO, he is a straight away runner who will get you to the 40 when there is a decent hole, but only to the 20-25 when things break down. There is nothing wrong with that at all - I like him back there - but am I the only one who noticed how damn GOOD the blocking and setups were on kick returns? I think they're thinking "you know, this kid, with the holes we create...he could go the distance, while steady Rock can't outrun the field, and is out of bounds at the 40-50"...and I think they're right. They played excellent return teams last year on kickoffs, and with someone as explosive as this kid, it could pay off much more handsomely. It's not as if Rock won't have anything to do by the way: he still is one of our best special teams coverage guys, a leader on the team, and a capable backup at RB.

In the end, if Mathis is a behavioral mess, or just can't get healthy, etc..they can let him go with no fuss or muss.

So Jason, what really is the problem?

Posted by: Shaun | April 7, 2008 6:25 PM | Report abuse


You, Sir or Madam as the case may be were NOT first!!

Posted by: Keyskonnection | April 7, 2008 9:01 PM | Report abuse

Think you hit the nail on the head Shaun. Mathis COULD be a more explosive upgrade for Rock who can only take you so far with his speed and change of direction in the return game. I doubt opposing special team coaches are losing much sleep at night game planning for Rock and Randle El is even worse for punt returns. Another year of dancing with the stars back there wouldn't yield an acceptable PR avg. I say give Mathis or another speed guy a shot. They could even draft for that role late since there are plenty of WR's who can run but are far from polished receivers.

Any talk of packaging Betts for a trade who be dangerous given Portis's injuries of late. I feel much better about Betts toting the rock than Rock since he's proven he can do it. Insurance at certain positions and RB is one of them is a good thing to have and unless someone were to make a spectacular offer, they should keep him.

Posted by: BESE2 | April 8, 2008 5:46 AM | Report abuse

Calm down Blog Man (Janso). Don't be silly. Next you will be blaming Cerratto for the national credit crisis.(By the way, my reference to Synder and Cerratto will henceforth be "Tony" and "Christopher" from the Sapranos.)

This is signing ONE kid who can fly and might just fall into line under the influence of a strong Skin's locker room.

I don't take even a hint of domestic violence lightly, but it is not entirely clear just what occurred. Lord knows the cops have very little if any resort but to make an arrest these days once they put down the doughnuts and arrive on the scene.

As far as the dogs are concerned, who gives a rat's azz!

Granted, however, the Skin's can look deeper into the domestic abuse situation rather than just relying on the fact that charges were dropped, and so could you by the way.

I find that you often provide some good REPORTING. There is no need to forget that part of your job, even if you do have a rant to make, justified or not.

Now, as to this notion that I have read in the comments posted re Rock Cartwright jumping into replace a soon to be traded Betts. You must be kidding me. Maybe he can get some more time backing up Jug Head Sellers, but that is about it; and don't be shocked if the Skins draft a fullback with one of those late round picks to spice up things in camp. Yes Broughton might spice things up as well but the "Zorn Coast Offense" needs fullbacks.

I thought a good point was made re ARE. The Skins need him to stay healthy and contribute as Wideout. They wore him out last year with all of his special teams work and yes he was a trooper. Depending on who the Skin's draft and what Mix can bring to the table, it may NOT be possible to move ARE to the slot position like Zorn would like. I have a feeling that Mix might be too slow to play outside but might contribute in the slot working against the 3rd corner or a safety, and while we are talking about Mix, let's keep our perspective about this kid who was so stunning that he was on the Giant's practice squad. ARE could play outside as the real #2 until we can bring the new draft pick along, and no I don't think that ARE is a legit #2, just maybe the best we can do for now.

Furthermore, not sure Moss is a legit #1, even when healthy. Just a thought, as I am not totally familiar with the "Zorn Coast Offense."

Also, thought the comments re Rock's return style are on point. He gets what is there that is for sure, but not much else because of his straight ahead style. That is no crime mind you but not the ideal. The best thing that can be said about Rock's return game is that he catches the dammed ball, and from what I remember, he holds on to it for the most part, which is where it all begins. There is nothing worse than the burner who can't catch or hold onto the ball.

This new kid might push both ARE and Rock in the return game, but if he doesn't, so what: the cost to this skins amounts to a .99 cent double cheeseburger (also known as the "Homeless Burger" in the city proper) from the Golden Arches.

We need bodies and competition across the board. Any FO has to always be looking to add to the mix, within reason re "character issues" of course. You can never sit back and be content with the guys you have. Last time I checked Rock and ARE did not make the Pro Bowl as return guys.

Finally, let's give "Saint Joe" his due for turning around the Skin's special teams, which had become a joke under the "Ole Ball Coach." That might not be a great feat, but it is one of the reasons for two playoff seasons.

Now if only Opie had made that kick against the Seahawks, we might all feel a lot better about Gibbs 2.0.


Posted by: Redskin's One | April 8, 2008 6:15 AM | Report abuse

A couple of people have said why Mathis was signed, and it relates to pulling El off of special teams if possible.

Posted by: Mattsoundworld | April 8, 2008 8:17 AM | Report abuse

@Redskin's One

The slot reciever doesnt necessarily need to be the worst athlete, and the primary doesnt necessarily have to be a stud, especially in the WC. You'll even see a TO or Moss line up in the slot every now and then.

The key is matchups. How do you cover a TO in the slot? Play zone? With what? Linebackers? Nickle backs? He'll torch them all day. You man up with your best corner? Then hes got the whole field to work with, and not even Champ can shut down both sides at the same time. Not to mention the weaker CBs would now be stuck covering the fliers. You chip him with a nickle back and assign safety help? Then he runs drag routes all day.

Posted by: Mattsoundworld | April 8, 2008 8:40 AM | Report abuse

I think the Mathis signing is a good thing. Hopefully Mathis has learned his lessons and the change of scenery should help also. He was signed as cheaply as possible. If he works out, we will have one guy doing all the returns, allowing ARE to focus solely on being a receiver. Betts could easily be traded for a quality pick. He is being wasted in Washington and Rock could be a quality #2 running back.

Posted by: Jimwell | April 8, 2008 9:31 AM | Report abuse

charactor ....smcharactor...its football, lots of these guys have anger issues, they hit people for a living....its a no risk signing and we need playmakers....betts is a waste of roster spot unless cp is out for the year....if you can get something trade him (betts is a 2nd round pick the skins thought so much of they traded for cp) Kenny Watson or Rock would have given us equal or better production for more value........

Posted by: Old School | April 8, 2008 9:54 AM | Report abuse

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