Green Bay, WI (Sports Network) - The Green Bay Packers have locked up one of
their star players for the long term, with All-Pro linebacker Clay Matthews
coming to terms with the defending NFC North champions on a multi-year
contract extension Wednesday.
The Packers did not reveal financial terms, but the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
reported the agreement to be five years in length with a total value of $66
million. Matthews was entering the final year of the rookie contract he signed
after being taken by Green Bay with the 26th overall pick of the 2009 draft.
"Trivial among the recent tragic news, but happy to continue my career in
Green Bay!," Matthews tweeted on Wednesday.
The only player in franchise history to earn Pro Bowl honors in each of his
first four seasons in the NFL, Matthews has compiled 42 1/2 sacks over that
span and recorded 13 this past season to finish fifth in the league. His
overall sack total over the last four years is also the fifth-most of any NFL
players during that time frame.
Matthews racked up 13 1/2 sacks along with 60 tackles and two forced fumbles
during Green Bay's Super Bowl XLV championship run in 2010, finishing second
to Pittsburgh safety Troy Polamalu in voting for the NFL's Defensive Player of
the Year award that season. He followed up with a 50-tackle, six-sack campaign
in 2011, while also establishing career highs for interceptions (3) and forced
fumbles (3) that year.
"Congratulations to Clay, who has quickly developed into a core member of our
team," Packers head coach Mike McCarthy said. "His accomplishments and the
example he sets on and off the field will be vital to our continued success.
We look forward to the rest of his Packers career."
With Matthews now under contract until 2018, the Packers can now turn their
attention toward hammering out a long-term pact with quarterback Aaron
Rodgers. The Journal Sentinel reported this past weekend that the team and the
2011 league MVP were close to a deal that would make Rodgers the highest-paid
player in the NFL.
Rodgers and Matthews, incidentally, are both represented by the Athletes First
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