97. Clay Matthews Jr.

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97. Clay Matthews Jr.

It is hard not to consider Clay Matthews Jr. as part of football royalty.

How can you not? 

He is the son of former San Francisco 49er, Clay Matthews Sr., the father of Clay Matthews III, the brother of Hall of Famer, Bruce Matthews, and the uncle of Jake and Kevin Matthews.  As for this specific member of the Matthews clan, we have a 19-year veteran who spent 16 of them with the Cleveland Browns.  In four of those seasons, he was named to the Pro Bowl.  Matthews Jr. may never have been a First Team All-Pro, but he had the longevity and relevance that overcomes that objection.  Matthews is currently third all-time in Tackles and in the top fifteen in Games Played. 

The resume of Clay Matthews Jr. is one of the great examples of whether Canton wants to recognize a long period of being very good though he was never quite elite.

The Bullet Points

  • Country of Origin: Palo Alto, California, U.S.A.
  • Eligible Since: Tuesday, 01 January 2002
  • Position: Linebacker
  • Games Played: 278
  • Notable Statistics: 16 Interceptions
    206 Interception Return Yards
    1 Interception Return Touchdown
    27 Forced Fumbles*
    14 Fumble Recoveries
    29 Fumble Recovery Yards
    1 Fumble Recovery Touchdown
    82.5 Quarterback Sacks
    1,595 Combined Tackles
    131 Solo Tackles**
    34 Assisted Tackles**
    139 Approximate Value

    11 Playoff Games
    1 Interception
    0 Interception Return Yards
    2.0 Quarterback Sacks

    *Forced Fumbles was not a statistic until the 1983 Season.
    **Solo Tackles and Assisted Tackles were not statistics until the 1994 Season.
  • Played For: Atlanta Falcons, Cleveland Browns
  • College: USC
  • Drafted: 1st Round, 12th Overall in 1978
  • Major Accolades and Awards:

    Super Bowl Champion (None)
    Second Team All-Pro (1) (1984)
    Pro Bowl (4) (1985, 1987, 1988 & 1989)
    Most Solo Tackles (4) (1978, 1979, 1981 & 1984)
    Most Combined Tackles (4) (1978, 1979, 1981 & 1984)
    Most Forced Fumbles (1) (1983)

  • Other Points of Note:

    Top Ten Finishes: Solo Tackles (7) (1978, 1979, 1980, 1981, 1982, 1983 & 1984)
    Top Ten Finishes: Combined Tackles (7) 1978, 1979, 1980, 1981, 1982, 1983 & 1984)
    Top Ten Finishes: Forced Fumbles (4) (1983, 1984, 1985 & 1989)

  • Notable All Time Rankings: 7. Combined Tackles: 1,595
    16. Games Started: 248
    24. Games Played: 278
    32. Forced Fumbles: 27
    98. Approximate Value: 138
  • Years Nominated for the Hall of Fame: 2021

Should Clay Matthews Jr. be in the Hall of Fame?

Definitely put him in! - 57.1%
Maybe, but others deserve it first. - 19%
Probably not, but it wouldn't be the end of the world. - 14.3%
No opinion. - 0%
No way! - 9.5%
Last modified on Tuesday, 22 March 2022 17:57

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