INDIANAPOLIS – They can't get rid of Robert Mathis.
And they don't want to get rid of the franchise's all-time leading sacker.
Mathis is retired from the NFL.
After 14 seasons of chasing quarterbacks, and sacking 62 different players, Mathis called it a career at the end of the 2016 season.
The first offseason away from football has been a getaway, but just from the playing aspect of things.
With the Colts in their third week of the offseason program, there's Mathis close by.
"I've been around the team pretty much every day," Mathis said earlier this week, when he joined Query and Schultz on WNDE. "Get to the complex (at 8:30 a.m.), until like 1:00-1:30."
What Mathis is trying to find out is how he will be spending his post-football life.
Upon retiring from the NFL a few months back, Mathis made it clear he wanted to stay involved in the game at some capacity.
Instilling his knowledge into the next wave of pass rushers is a goal for Mathis.
"I'm still not sure," Mathis says. "I know I do not want to be a coach. I'm positive of that.
"I want to maximize my time with my family, but I definitely want to be around the game in some shape or form. Ideally, it would be with my team, that I've been a part of for 14 years."
Not many players, for any NFL franchise, can say they played for just one team throughout an entire career.
Mathis never put on another team's jersey for a game, or even a practice.
It's been Colts through and through.
The Colts and Mathis have yet to have formal conversations about a more permanent role for the six-time Pro Bowler.
It's clear what Mathis means to the organization, as the team had No. 98 attend this year's NFL Draft and announce the Colts' 46th overall pick.
He's still part of the Horseshoe, just not going full throttle during the team's offseason program.
"It's extremely weird," Mathis said on Query and Schultz of not participating this time of year.
"This week was the first week of actual on-field activities. Just to be on the sideline looking and not being in the drill, leading the drill, it was surreal, and just weird."
When Mathis gets done at the Indiana Farm Bureau Football Center in 2017, he heads home for a bit before it's time to pick up the kids from school and "then it's party time until bed time," he says.
Sure, things are more relaxing and certainly less demanding from a physical standpoint, but the itch for football has not really diminished.
"I'm enjoying it," Mathis says of retirement, "but I'm still scratching at the doors at the complex."
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