NFL

Packers deny interest in resigning Clay Matthews despite Aaron Rodgers appeals

Packers GM Brian Gutekunst shot down suggestions that the franchise could resign out-of-contract linebacker Clay Matthews despite Aaron Rodgers calls to "bring him home".

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Packers deny interest in resigning Clay Matthews despite Aaron Rodgers appeals
Hannah Foslien Getty Images

Clay Matthews was one of the pillars of the Green Bay Packers defence for a decade until he left Wisconsin to join the Los Angeles Rams in 2019 on a two-year contract.

Matthews was released by the Rams in the off-season in March, 2020 and subsequently did not play during the 2020 season. Recently, there have been calls to bring the out-of-contract linebacker back to Green Bay, where quarterback Aaron Rodgers, receiver Randall Cobb, and tackle David Bakhtiari have voiced their support for Matthews’s return on social media.

“BRING HIM HOME,” wrote Rodgers on Instagram accompanying a photo of Matthews, who himself hasn’t ruled out playing in 2021 and is understood to be open to the possibility of returning to the Packers.

Aaron Rodgers wants to see Clay Mattews back at Green Bay.

Packers GM rules out move for Clay Matthews

However, Packers general manager Brian Gutekunst has shot down suggestions that the franchise could resign the 35-year-old linebacker.

“We’ve had no discussions about that,” Gutekunst said when quizzed about Rodgers and Co’s Instagram posts.

Gutekunst’s words could add even more tension to his already frosty relationship with Rodgers. Before the start of the Packers’ training camp, the 2020 MVP had threatened that he would not return to the franchise as long as Gutekunst remained their general manager.

Rodgers was also understood to be unhappy about the arrival of 2020 draft pick Jordan Love, who the franchise sees as their quarterback for the future.

Is Matthews a viable signing for the Packers?

Should Gutekunst reconsider his stance on resigning Matthews, the Californin native could add depth to Green Bay’s corps of linebackers currently led by Preston Green and Za’Darius Smith.

In his last season in the NFL in 2019, Matthews recorded eight sacks. In comparison, Za’Darius managed 12.5 sacks last season, while the Packer with the second highest number of sacks behind him in 2020 was Rashan Gary with five.