Matthews has started all 47 regular-season games and all three playoff games he has played with the Falcons, missing only one regular-season game due to a high ankle sprain. He is set to make $2,665,386 for the 2017 season, including a roster bonus of $1,970,386 due on the third day of training camp.
Falcons general manager Thomas Dimitroff said the team planned all along to pick up Matthews' fifth-year option.
"We're, as you know, historically we're particular about the guys that we think are important pillar parts of our organization, and he is one of those," Dimitroff said.
Having the option year picked up should be the precursor to a long-term deal for Matthews. Last year, the Falcons picked up the fifth-year, $8.026 million option on cornerback Desmond Trufant, the 22nd overall pick in the 2013 draft. Then Trufant signed a five-year, $68.75 million extension, with $41.526 million guaranteed, on April 10.
The Falcons rewarded starting right tackle Ryan Schraeder, a former undrafted player, with a five-year, $31.5 million extension in November that included $12.5 million guaranteed.