Clay Matthews was once again flagged for a roughing the passer penalty. This week he sounded off, after he was flagged again Sunday on a play that wiped out a potentially game-clinching interception late in the fourth quarter of the 29-29 tie with the Minnesota Vikings.
“I have so many emotions running through as far as what a terrible call it was,” Matthews said. “At the same time, I don’t know what else to do. I don’t know. You let me know. You tell me. Did I put pressure on him? I thought I hit him within his waist to chest, I got my head across, put my hands down. To call it at that point in the game is unbelievable.
“Last week, OK, shame on me. This week, that’s unbelievable. The worst part is, we’ll probably send it in and you know what they’re going to say? They’ll find fault on me because they’re going to agree with the refs. I don’t know. It’s a difficult call to call.
“You see how it changed the game. I know there’s an emphasis on protecting quarterbacks, but it’s gotten out of control. I don’t know what else to do. It’s frustrating because Jaire’s interception, that’s game [over], right? Instead, they go down and score, overtime, this and that.
“We had opportunities to win the game, no doubt about it, but frustrating to allow a call which I feel like I did the right thing to influence the game. I don’t know. I’m trying to bite my tongue, but I obviously don’t agree with it.”
Referee Tony Corrente explained to ESPN, which handled the referee’s pool report, what he saw.
“When [Matthews] hit the quarterback, he lifted him and drove him into the ground,” Corrente said.
He added that the penalty did not fall under the new rules established for this season.
“Not at all,” he said. “It has nothing to do with the rule of full body weight. It has nothing to do with helmet to helmet. He picked the quarterback up and drove him into the ground.”
When asked what Matthews should have done differently, Corrente said: “Not picked him up and drove him into the ground.”
The NFL is taking some of the fun away from rushing the Quarterback. I totally understand QB’s are the NFL’s golden geese, but this is getting out of hand.
Kirk Cousins: Clay Matthews penalty "probably a generous call" https://t.co/RPxJw8e2SF
— ProFootballTalk (@ProFootballTalk) September 17, 2018