If the Green Bay Packers hope to get Clay Matthews back on the field this season, they need to have their season extend beyond this weekend’s game with the San Francisco 49ers.
According to Jason Wilde of ESPNWisconsin.com, Packers head coach Mike McCarthy said Monday that Matthews will not be available for the Packers this week in their playoff opener.
“I really don’t have a feel for Clay as far as where he is. I really haven’t even seen him to talk to him,” McCarthy said. “You’re always cautious with players after surgery.
“Right now he’s out for this week and that’s really what we’re focused on.”
Matthews injured his right thumb on a sack of Ben Roethlisberger in Green Bay’s Week 16 game against the Pittsburgh Steelers. McCarthy called it “a repeat injury” of the injury suffered by Matthews against the Detroit Lions on Oct. 6. That injury forced Matthews to miss four games for the Packers. Matthews did not play against the Chicago Bears on Sunday.
Matthews has posted 7.5 sacks with 41 tackles and three forced fumbles for the Packers this season.
Matthews did play for the Packers in their season opening 34-28 loss to the 49ers in San Francisco. Colin Kaepernick threw for a career-high 412 yards and three touchdowns against the Packers that day. It was the only 300-yard game of the season for Kaepernick before Sunday’s season finale against the Arizona Cardinals.
With Kaepernick’s dominant performance against the Packers last year in the playoffs as well, Green Bay will need to find someway to slow the 49ers’ offensive attack and do so without Matthews in the lineup.