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Arizona Cardinals, Tyrann Mathieu agree on contract extension

It always seemed to be a matter of when and not if.

Now, it’s a done deal.

The Arizona Cardinals and defensive back Tyrann Mathieu have agreed to a contract extension on Tuesday. The team made the news official and will hold a press conference with Mathieu at 2:30 p.m. Wednesday.

And the contract will keep Mathieu in Cardinals red for the next several years.

It will also make Mathieu the highest-paid safety in the league.

Mathieu appeared to confirm the news himself on Tuesday with a cryptic tweet.

Entering his fourth NFL season after being chosen in the third round of the 2013 NFL Draft, Mathieu is coming off an injury-shortened campaign that had him in the running for the NFL Defensive Player of the Year Award until being sidelined in Week 15.

In 14 games last season, Mathieu tallied 89 tackles, 16 passes defensed, five interceptions, 11 tackles for loss and a forced fumble. Listed as a safety, he played a lot of cornerback, too.

The Cardinals made no secret of their desire to lock up Mathieu, who was set to become a free agent following the 2016 season, to a long-term extension.

The only issue, if there was one, was that the 24-year-old has had two of his three NFL seasons cut short due to serious knee injuries. However, both Mathieu and the team are confident he will recover from his latest ailment and return to the form that led to his first Pro Bowl selection in 2015.

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