Rob Demovsky | ESPN.com
GREEN BAY, Wis. — Remember when Green Bay Packers coach Mike McCarthy insisted linebacker Clay Matthews was not a dirty player after his late hit on San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick in Week 1?
Well, according to Matthews, the NFL agreed with McCarthy.
Matthews told ESPN.com on Thursday that the league reduced the $15,000 fine he received for hitting Kaerpernick out of bounds in the season opener. That penalty started a fracas on the sideline. Matthews said the fine was cut to $7,500.
What’s more, Matthews said he also won the appeal on his fine from Week 10 against the Philadelphia Eagles, when he was originally docked $15,750 for his roughing the passer penalty against Nick Foles.
“I got the whole thing rescinded because I didn’t hit him with my head,” Matthews said.
Matthews said he originally asked for that fine to be reduced, but Matt Birk, an appeals officer jointly appointed by the NFL and the NFL Players Association, said he’d wipe out the entire thing.
“It was funny because he said I think you’re underselling yourself as far as my appeal,” Matthews said. “He’s like, ‘I don’t think you hit him with your head at all.’ I thought I hit him legally, so $15,000 was way too much. And he said, ‘Well, I don’t think you really did anything, so we’re going to take that away.’ So that was a good day.”
Those were Matthews’ only two fines of the season.
“And now it’s only one — half of one,” he said.
- Covered Packers for Green Bay Press-Gazette from 1997-2013
- Two-time Wisconsin Sportswriter of the Year as selected by the National Sportscasters and Sportswriters Association