Former Packers, Rams OLB Clay Matthews announces ‘playing days are over’

Son of the Browns’ all-time great linebacker Clay Matthews and nephew of Hall of Fame offensive lineman Bruce Matthews, William Clay Matthews III stood out at USC before the Packers ranked him at Ranked 26th in the 2009 NFL Draft. Early on, he was a standout contributor for the Pack, posting 10 sacks in a Pro Bowl rookie campaign. It was the first of four double-digit seasons for Matthews in his career.

Matthews is the official Packers career leader for sacks (sacks became an official stat in 1982) with 83.5.

There seemed to be a chance that Matthews could re-sign with the Packers in 2020, as Joe Barry, who had coached Matthews in Los Angeles, had been hired as defensive coordinator for Green Bay. That didn’t materialize, however, and Matthews, 36, is happy with how it all turned out.

“He had reached out to me,” Matthews said, via ESPN. “He knew I could still play and I think he knew if he had me he could find a way to use me as part of the scheme. But nothing ever came to light so I think that ultimately there might have been powers above that didn’t want this to happen. But yes, there was a brief glimmer of hope to return. It didn’t happen, but I’m fine, but I’m at peace with my career.

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