There was once a chance that Evan Mathis would be on the opposite sideline this weekend.
Before Mathis signed a $25-million contract with the Eagles in March, Mathis met with the Baltimore Ravens. The meeting went so well that the Ravens convinced Mathis to stay overnight and were hoping he'd sign a contract before leaving. But Mathis knew that the Eagles would come back with an offer, and that was the deal he wanted.
"The way it played out, Howie kind of let set someone else set the market," Mathis said. "I knew he was very open and up front about doing that. They made an offer, and he blew it out of the water. Ultimately, I knew what we had here, I wanted to be a part of it. But I was in a great position there. I was choosing between the Ravens and the Eagles, two great franchises."
Stlll, Mathis was not trying to call the Eagles' bluff. He seriously considered the Ravens, and likely would have signed with Baltimore if the situation was reversed.
"I was definitely weighing my option," Mathis said. "They're a great team, a great organization, coach Harbaugh, I have a lot of respect for everything he does. If it was the other around, and I was coming out of Baltimore in free agency, weighing everything equally, I probably would have gone there."