And no, I'm not talking about the band. At 5'9 186lbs, Mathieu is certainly not as big and strong as Seattle's corners but but his athleticism and natural ability to get after the ball (fast) helps him put more on the table than what appears at first glance. If you're not already, take 4 minutes to get familiar:
Despite his history of bad off the field decisions, he insists that he's changed his ways and ready to do what it takes to right those wrongs and let his football ability speak for itself. Some may shy away from players who've made mistakes seeing it as risky but others view it as an opportunity to get a great player for a cheaper pick than would normally be able to. His performance at the combine so far has commentators questioning his worth given his problems at LSU while absolutely RAVING about his on field ability at the same time. If there's one thing everyone is in agreement on, it's Mathieu's natural athletic ability.
Despite his known problems off the field, I think the Falcons should strongly consider picking up Mathieu in the 3rd round if he's still available. He could solve our punt return issue, give us a great option at nickel and some more depth outside at corner. It's clear that he loves playing football and when given the opportunity he excels on the field. Mike Smith organized the most disciplined football team over a 16 game season with only 55 penalties this year. Perhaps he and other vets on the team can give Mathieu the discipline he needs off the field as well and help us get a great player at a discount price.
What are your thoughts?