Robert Mathis' playing career may be over, but that doesn't mean that he can kick back and watch games on TV like you or me.
Mathis, appearing on this week's episode of the Colts Reunion Podcast with Jeffrey Gorman and Bill Brooks, explained how he – as one of the greatest defensive linemen in NFL history – watches football these days.
"It's been a couple times I've wanted to flip a few couches or throw a book at the TV," Mathis said. "But that's just because we can't watch football as fans. I'm not even looking at the DBs or receivers, I'm looking at the pass rushers. The first three seconds, I'm watching that — then, whenever he throws the ball, that's when I become a fan. But I'm looking at it, I'm critiquing, criticizing, fussing and cussing."
Mathis retired after the 2016 season, putting an end to a Hall of Fame-worthy career in which he notched 123 sacks and an NFL record 54 forced fumbles over his 14 years in Indianapolis. But when asked which quarterback he liked taking down the most, Mathis pointed to an obvious answer.
"It was always a tough match going against him and those Patriots rivalries," Mathis said. "When you're able to get to him, a lot of work went into that. Dwight (Freeney) and myself along with a lot of other guys that we played with — it's things that you remember for a long time."
Mathis sacked Brady five times in his career – the only quarterbacks he sacked more were AFC South foes (David Carr, Blaine Gabbert, Matt Schaub).
On the podcast, Mathis also discussed a number of topics with Gorman and Brooks, including:
- The impact John Teerlinck had on his career
- How he learned to use his size to his advantage
- The art of the strip sack
- How Dwight Freeney impacted his career
- His relationship with Peyton Manning and Tony Dungy
- Memories from how good the Colts were during his career
- What he's up to these days