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Eventual Deal for Clay Matthews Expected to Cost At Least $13M per Year

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Eventual Deal for Clay Matthews Expected to Cost At Least $13M per Year

While the majority of the contractual spotlight this offseason has focused directly on quarterback Aaron Rodgers, the Green Bay Packers have another mega deal that's expected to be completed before the start of the 2013 season.

Linebacker Clay Matthews, who is entering the final year of his rookie contract, also needs an extension, and it's expected to cost the Packers a pretty penny.

According to ESPN's Adam Schefter, Matthews' new deal will be in the $13 million-a-year range.

NFL Network's Ian Rapoport piggy-backed on Schefter's discovery, reporting that the Packers' offer to Matthews is already richer than DeMarcus Ware's deal.

Ware is currently the NFL's highest paid linebacker. Matthews will soon take over that title, just as Rodgers is expected to at the quarterback position.

Zach Kruse is a 24-year-old sports writer who contributes to Cheesehead TV, Bleacher Report and the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. He also covers prep sports for the Dunn Co. News. You can reach him on Twitter @zachkruse2 or by email at [email protected].

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Fan friendly comments only: off Comments (35) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

Evan's picture

I'm as big a Clay Matthews fan as there is and he deserves every penny he gets - but he really needs to start all 16+ games one of these years.

Point Packer's picture

And he really needs a team-mate on the other end of the line to make noise and free up some space for CM3 to be the presence we all know he can be.

Brian Carriveau's picture

He did start 14, 19 and 16 his first three years. Only last season was really a letdown.

Evan's picture

True. And his rookie year doesn't count. So the last three years he's missed 1, 1 and 4 games.

I feel like it's been the same issue, too - his hamstrings. True or false?

MarkinMadison's picture

Certainly his hamstings have been an annual issue. Recurring problems like this are a $itch to deal with.

Lars's picture

What do you suggest, telling him to play at 1/2 speed like Hawk so he can play all 16 games? Pay the man and don't think twice.

Lars's picture

Right. Because the most important thing is to start 16 games like AJ Hawk and very carefully play those games (letting others take risks) pile jumping to stay on the field. So tired of this narrative.

Evan's picture

So, it's either miss 2-4 games a year or be AJ Hawk? Why are those the only two options? He can't be healthy and dominant?

MarkinMadison's picture

Or to figure out if there is something he can do differently to deal with the annual hamstring problem. I'm sure he's talking to the best people to figure it out. And you may be sick of the narrative, but the bottom line is if you are not on the field you are not contributing. It should impact his contract value, honestly.

Stroh's picture

A lot if contract the Packers do have bonuses for each game they're active. I'm sure his will also tho it would be small compared to his salary.

Zub's picture

I respect Clay Mathews & believes he should be paid. IMO the only position worthy of crazy money is QB. When teams start paying players at other positions crazy money will start the down fall of the team in terms of playoffs played and won.

IMO Clay or the position is worth between 9 to 11 million a year, after that you are eliminating an additional quality player due to the cap. The position or Clay is not greater than 2 quality players, no one is.

IMO Ware is being paid to much & I predict Dallas will have issues on defense & will not win the division.

This is a catch 22 as there are teams willing to pay Clay cazy money, I say make a move like the Pats, it is better to part ways.

Franklin Hillside's picture


Zub's picture

You would pay Clay Mathews 15 to 17 million at a postion that covers only one side of the field

Evan's picture

Where is $15-17 coming from? I'd pay Clay Matthews $14 million in a second. He is a dominating, disruptive force.

Zub's picture

The rumor is something more than 13 million, something higher than 13 million.

I just saying you can over pay a player in relation to the cap, if there was no cap, I would pay Clay 20 million to watch him play in a Packer uniform on Sunday.

If Clay's number grows too big, it will start having a negative impact on other positions on the team

Evan's picture

Yeah, more than $13. I'd be shocked if he jumps past Ware by $3-4 million a year. That'd be a 25-30 percent increase. I think $14 mil is more realistic.

But, yeah, if his number grows too big it will affect the rest of the roster. But I trust the Packers to be smart about it. And being able to heavily front load both deals with their current cap space should help alleviate that negative impact down the line.

Stroh's picture

Evan. Front loading either Rodgers or Matthews is unlikely. They're bout 18M under cap and if AR gous up 12m and CM 6M the full cap will be used. And that doesn't include the draft picks worth approx 5m. Things are gonna be real tight cap wise till it escalates in a couple years.

al's picture


KennyPayne's picture

No one can accuse Thompson of not paying his boys (Hawk, Crosby, Finley, T. Williams, and now Clay and soon Aaron).

I am starting to wonder if the Packers might be overvaluing some of the home grown talent.

Zub's picture

It concerns me too.

Idiot Fan's picture

True, though you're highlighting the ones that maybe didn't work out. We got Jordy at a steal and several years of below-value pay for Rodgers due to TT offering his guys a contract at the right time.

MarkinMadison's picture

Walden got stupid money from the Colts. Point is, eveyone makes some mistakes.

Evan's picture

I also think the names you listed all fit in different groups.

Clay and Aaron don't belong in this discussion. They're among the best at their positions and will be paid market value.

Finley isn't over-valued, but he is certainly overpaid.

Hawk and Crosby are probably both.

Tramon is overpaid based on recent performance, but that deal was given pre-injury. So it's sort of asterisk, to me. If healthy and is able to regain his form, I'd say he's properly valued and paid.

Idiot Fan's picture

For those who feel like taking a glass-half-full approach to this:

murphy's picture

Gives me chills.


Drealyn Williams's picture

Ohhh how I miss the pre-snap creativity of the defense. Dom must not have (much) confidence in the Safeties (last line of defense).

Point Packer's picture

That Brandon Jacobs punch out was awesome.

packsmack25's picture

How lucky are we to watch Matthews and Rodgers now, and some of us getting to see Reggie and Asshole in his prime? We're spoiled rotten.

Cole's picture

When healthy, he's in the ultra elite of Watt, Atkins, and v miller. When's he banged up he's just a rung below that so ya he's worth it. We still haven't seen his full potential with an inside push and (hopefully) Perry collapsing the other edge.

RC Packer Fan's picture

And people were wondering why the Packers weren't blowing their money on over the hill free agents...

Rodgers 22-25 mil a year.
Mathews 13-15ish mil a year.
Raji is expected to come next..

I'd rather have Mathews then any free agent available.

cow42's picture

i'm just gonna keep my mouth shut.

MarkinMadison's picture

Laugh out freaking loud.

Just find some happy moments. You're worried about San Fran? How many Super Bowls did Vick win? Or (heaven forbid) one good shot to the knee and the 49ers would have no competent QB (yeah, I know, neither would the Packers). It's just a game. Enjoy it. Be Happy.

Point Packer's picture

Yeah, lets not pay him now and then be forced to let him go into free agency so we Packer fans can watch him wear purple or orange while slamming into #12's back at full speed...

Nononsense's picture

Well if there is collusion going on in the NFL then Ted and the Packers didn't get the memo.

I say "Pay that man. Pay that man his money" Rodgers too. These guys are easily top 5 players at their positions so if anyones worth that kind of dough, they are.

The initial contracts and the numbers will be a shock to the system but if TTs giving them these contracts, hes got a plan to pay for them.

His philosphy won't change, its draft and develop and the teams fate will depend on those draft picks and the few undrafted or street FAs gems hes able to find along the way(Dujuan Harris being the latest).

Get your popcorn ready!

Idiot Fan's picture

+1 for the Teddy KGB reference!

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