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Clay Matthews: Julius Peppers is going to create a lot of opportunities for me

Clay Matthews AP

Packers linebacker Clay Matthews is feeling good on a couple of fronts these days.

Matthews’ thumb is feeling better after a pair of injuries led to season-ending surgery in December and the opposite side of the Packers defense is looking more imposing after they signed Julius Peppers following Peppers’ departure from the Bears. Matthews thinks Peppers’ arrival is going to lead to more chances to get to the quarterback.

“This guy’s [6-7], 290. I’m 6-4 on a good day and 255,” Matthews said, via Tom Pelissero of USA Today. “They’re going to double the big guy, and that leaves plenty of opportunities for me. I haven’t had too many one-on-one opportunities, and when you do, you’re expected to win — at least in our locker room — the majority of the time, because that’s supposed to be a mismatch.”

A healthy Matthews should win a fair amount of those battles and he said that he doesn’t expect to do much at OTAs to limit the risk of a third injury to his thumb. He expects to be all systems go for training camp and a pairing with the best pass rusher he’s had across from him in Green Bay.

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44 Responses to “Clay Matthews: Julius Peppers is going to create a lot of opportunities for me”
  1. Ferdinand says: Apr 16, 2014 2:39 PM

    Wait, Clay, are you saying your height fluctuates?

  2. mnjoemama says: Apr 16, 2014 2:39 PM

    Peppers will open up the opportunity to finally help Fabio not be the most fragile player on the team . Skol Vikes !!

  3. osiris33 says: Apr 16, 2014 2:48 PM

    Peppers was washed up 5 years ago

  4. ariani1985 says: Apr 16, 2014 2:49 PM

    You two losers gonna stay healthy?

    skol

  5. lambeauphan says: Apr 16, 2014 2:50 PM

    clay has been waiting for this opportunity since the pack drafted him, if he stays health…watch out, not many people can stop this guy 1:1

  6. ariani1985 says: Apr 16, 2014 2:51 PM

    Thumb injury? Lol, and I thought erin was soft!

  7. doctorrustbelt says: Apr 16, 2014 2:51 PM

    julius peppers will offer his human growth hormone and anabolic steroids to clay matthews jr., too.

  8. timcast12 says: Apr 16, 2014 2:52 PM

    Beast

  9. heisthejuan says: Apr 16, 2014 2:52 PM

    Now it will be even easier for Matthews to give up containment and run himself out of plays. Everybody wins!

  10. 46plank says: Apr 16, 2014 2:55 PM

    Wrong Clay- Peppers was handled one on one the majority of the time last year. You, sir, will be the one double teamed.

  11. jda129 says: Apr 16, 2014 2:58 PM

    I want to start a boy band featuring husky lads and call it Men Out of Boys or Moobs for short. I think Moobs would be big in Green Bay.

  12. deflateddome says: Apr 16, 2014 2:59 PM

    I think it will open less opportunities. Between Peppers feet and The White Chix hamstring, they will be less opportunities to be treated in the training room by week 5. They will have to stand…I mean sit in line

  13. gbpshareholder says: Apr 16, 2014 3:00 PM

    Haters gonna Hate… NFC North Champs!!! SCOREBOARD!!! GO PACK GO!!!!!!

  14. filthymcnasty1 says: Apr 16, 2014 3:00 PM

    Salt and Peppers.

  15. ariani1985 says: Apr 16, 2014 3:11 PM

    more like soft and peppers!!

  16. whatthehellisgoingonoutthere says: Apr 16, 2014 3:21 PM

    I love how Bears fans try to talk and pretend that Peppers didn’t receive the majority of double teams on the Bears defensive line. Shows how much they know and watch football. They sure as heck weren’t doubling Shea. Nobody is doubled on every snap, but Peppers had by far the most double teams last year than any other D-lineman.

  17. purplepanteez says: Apr 16, 2014 3:34 PM

    My Vikings recipe for success…

    Get rid of Jared Allen and face him twice a year.

    Enter every season with a quarterback who would be a backup on most every other team in the NFL.

    Laugh at the Packers because they have better players, have better coaches and win more than the Vikings do.

    Sounds like a fun way to spend the season.

    skol!

  18. Celebrity Man Guy says: Apr 16, 2014 3:35 PM

    So apparently offensive coaches decide who to double team based on how big each player is. That’s the kind of in-depth football analysis I expect from the Packer braintrust.

  19. skoldier612 says: Apr 16, 2014 3:36 PM

    “I’m 6’4 on a good day.” Are you bleeping kidding me? Sounds like a woman talking about her weight.

  20. linemanguy74 says: Apr 16, 2014 3:49 PM

    Some guy play with a broken wrist[Greenway} and some guy is on the sideline with a sore thumb

  21. binkystevens says: Apr 16, 2014 3:50 PM

    I just love all the hate on here. Just green with envy.

  22. gbmickey says: Apr 16, 2014 4:01 PM

    Some teams consistently win the division while some consistently reside in the cellar. The purple just set themselves up.

  23. douglasgreenbriar says: Apr 16, 2014 4:03 PM

    Last year average left tackles were handling Peppers one on one with ease.

  24. deltaoracle says: Apr 16, 2014 4:05 PM

    Some guys try to come back too soon from a broken thumb and break it again and some guys (Smith) is out half the year with a stubbed toe.

  25. linemanguy74 says: Apr 16, 2014 4:12 PM

    I guess if you play with a broken wrist you can’t brake it again Just admit clay is soft who on pack has missed more games than him??

  26. Shinnbone says: Apr 16, 2014 4:17 PM

    The sack record is in serious jeopardy.
    CM3, 2014 Defensive MVP, new sack record holder & MVP of Super Bowl XLIX with a new SB record of 6 sacks YES SIX! Vince is coming HOME!!!!! Book it!

  27. ninjapleazee says: Apr 16, 2014 4:18 PM

    If you can even stay healthy.

  28. sconnyslovethemsomecousins says: Apr 16, 2014 4:30 PM

    “Opportunities?” As in opportunities to make more tackles because you know Peppers isn’t going to make any? Or opportunities to get injured even more because your supporting cast around you is even worse than last year? Yep, Peppers gives you “opportunities” aright!

  29. jdhgopackgo says: Apr 16, 2014 4:32 PM

    Hey Queens I still love the “Erin” joke when the Queens are the team that actually had an ERIN on there team! LOL. Q the clown music, that’s a really funny one too! Get a clue.

  30. purpleguy says: Apr 16, 2014 4:41 PM

    Correct translation: Peppers will create opportunities for CMIII during the 50% of the plays Peppers actually puts forth any effort.

  31. rikker12 says: Apr 16, 2014 4:41 PM

    And some teams stay home for the playoffs!!

  32. cadillacjosh says: Apr 16, 2014 4:43 PM

    I’m a Bears guy and I stil support Peppers from afar, I’d love to see him have a bounce back year. Obviously, just not one that puts The Pack in better standing than the Bears.

    But to whoever said Bears fans didn’t watch enough games and Peppers was always doubled, it’s simply not true. He wasn’t even the most doubled on the line. That was Corey Wooton, for sure. Peppers is in serious decline and shouldn’t be a starter. But if it’s limited snaps, 10 – 20 a game, he should be a big help.

  33. zinjaboy says: Apr 16, 2014 4:46 PM

    more like soft and peppers!!

    ******************************

    completely agree with “soft” and peppers. i mean, he TOTALLY should have been playing with what’s called a “bennett fracture”. although orthopedic surgeons recommend 6 weeks of immobilization after open reduction and internal fixation (that’s “hardware placement” for Minnesotans) for that kind of fracture, your google research in your mom’s basement led to a WAY more logical assessment. you’re always spot on! SKLOL!!

  34. filthymcnasty1 says: Apr 16, 2014 4:47 PM

    I have no doubt that the Packers will once again be contending for their NFL record 14th world championship.

    I expect the Vikings will just be trying to avoid finishing dead last again – for the 4th time in the last 5 years.

    And that’s why they are so angry.

  35. ariani1985 says: Apr 16, 2014 4:50 PM

    but how are the going to know when to blitz and when not to with the clown music ringing in their ears????? hand signals????

  36. stellarperformance says: Apr 17, 2014 1:05 PM

    This tandem will assure the continued dominance of the Packers over the rest of the North Division for many years to come, especially the Vikings because, you know, the Packers OWN the Vikings.

  37. chukychez1 says: Apr 17, 2014 4:32 PM

    Hopefully Pepper’s will embrace being on a contender, & having chances to get to the Super Bowl. Finally being on the winning side of every Bear-Packer game, for a change.

  38. jwcarlson says: Apr 17, 2014 4:43 PM

    The ceiling for the Packers will be whatever the injury gods deal them like it has for the past five years.

    I don’t know how or why there are so many season ending or season threatening injuries happen so consistantly… but I would LOVE (as a Packers fan) for them to figure it out.

    Since 2009 I feel like no one has really ever seen how good the team can be… I’m not saying they’re the best in the league, but how do you judge a team who is routinely pulling in street free agents and practice squaders to start at LB in the middle of the season?

  39. jbvikes says: Apr 17, 2014 11:24 PM

    Even with situational play, do you guys REALLY think Peppers will last the season without injury and Clay Pot will last the whole season as well?? REALLY?? REALLY??

  40. rho1953 says: Apr 18, 2014 11:57 AM

    Yes, I think Peppers will last without injury. That hasn’t been the rub on him. He has been accused of being ineffective, not of missing games. Even so, he was an effective pass rusher. He will be a situational role player, I think he can do that. As far as Matthews and injuries, he has missed some games every year, but most NFL players miss games every year. You can’t name many players who don’t miss games because of injury. If that is your standard you won’t field a team. It is the NFL, and injuries are part of the deal. Which North team do you think won’t have players miss due to injury? Not the Vikings, who have had their share, their star, Peterson has missed significant time to injury the last two years. Not the Bears, Cutler has missed many games the last three years. Not the Lions, they have rashes of injuries at key positions, although they stayed relatively healthy last year except at RB. The Packers are loading up with enough of a rotation to hold up when when some guys go down with injury. That was the problem last year. They were decimated at LB, losing most of their starters except for Hawk for long stretches.

  41. tban65 says: Apr 18, 2014 2:34 PM

    All you Packer fans better hope Rodgers stays healthy or you are little better than the Vikings–whose starting QB I still cannot name. Peppers was a great athlete, but I think the Bears were right to let him go–his best years are likely behind him. He is a standup guy so I wouldn’t mind seeing him play well 14 out of 16 games a year.

    But I used to say it every year and you saw it last year: without Rodgers, the Packers are a very average team. So hit your knees and pray to the football gods my cheese loving neighbors, because a banged up Rodgers will make for a long cold winter.

  42. rho1953 says: Apr 18, 2014 5:19 PM

    Name a single Super Bowl contender that could still contend without their starting QB. We saw what the Vikings are without a QB and without Peterson. The Bears were the exception when Cutler went down, but that won’t happen again. The truth is that there isn’t enough depth on any team to withstand a real glut of injuries. Most teams would love to have the problem of having a guy like Rodgers come in behind Favre. Your statement is like saying the old 49er’s would be in trouble without Joe Montana. Well, DUH!

  43. whatjusthapped says: Apr 20, 2014 5:34 PM

    Here is a simple way to look at this, the Packers won 3 straight divisional titles without Peppers. Peppers is an improvement over anything GB had on their defensive line last year.

    Take a guess at what is very likely to happen for a 4 year in a row. No, the answer is not the Vikings finishing in last place, that is likely but it would only be three out of the four years.

    Good guess but you would be wrong.

  44. rho1953 says: Apr 20, 2014 7:05 PM

    The Vikings best player is an aged RB. He can’t carry the offense, he doesn’t have the ball in his hands on every play. The Packers best player is their QB, who has the ball in his hand on every play. Huge advantage Packers.

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