If the Green Bay Packers are going to make a serious run in the post season, they need to improve defensively, including their run defense which up until last week, was ranked dead last in the NFL.
Matthews impact was immediate as the Packers crushed the Bears and held their running game in check. Matthews also came up with 11 tackles and a sack.
It’s not ideal, taking your best outside pass rusher and forcing him inside. But the Packers were desperate, looking for somebody to help anchor the middle and stop the run. The move also allows the Packers to get players like Nick Perry on the field more. The teams linebacker depth is on the outside, which means moving Matthews inside is allowing more of the teams stronger players find their way on the field.
Clay Matthews younger brother Casey told the Philadelphia Daily News after last Sunday’s Packers win over the Bears that his brother wasn’t thrilled with the prospect of switching positions.
One can certainly understand Matthews initial reaction, but he told reporters on Thursday that he had to accept that this was best for the team.
Matthews said he doesn’t believe the move is permanent and isn’t sure he’ll get as many snaps inside as he did against Chicago.
Last week, Matthews move to inside linebackers was considered an unscouted look. While the Bears were surprised by it, the Philadelphia Eagles won’t be this week when the two teams hook up at Lambeau Field on Sunday. How will the Eagles game plan for Matthews in the middle will be one of the keys in this weeks matchup.