Clay Matthews And The White Elephant In The Room

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Clay Matthews

I hate to suggest it, but...

On Friday, Green Bay Packers’ outside linebacker Clay Matthews’ former teammate at USC and reigning defensive rookie of the year, Brian Cushing, was suspended by the NFL for four games for violating the NFL’s policy on steroids and related substances.

There’s been quite a bit of chatter that Cushing, who plays for the Houston Texans, used steroids in high school and college, so the news wasn’t a surprise to everyone. Cushing was the subject of a false report he tested positive for steroids during the 2009 scouting combine.

Matthews was the subject of a similar report.

Is this all coincidence?



I can’t help but play devil’s advocate, though.

Look at Matthews’ story for a moment. By now I’m sure you know it well.

Matthews walked on at USC as a 166 lbs. tight end/linebacker. Coming into his senior season, he was best known as a special teams demon. Matthews became a starter the third game of his senior season and turned into a playmaking linebacker like teammates Cushing and Rey Maualuga. By the time the scouting combine was finished, Matthews was a 240 lbs. riser who was shooting up draft boards league wide.

Matthews work ethic and determination have been well documented.

In fact, I don’t want to take anything away from a guy who’s worked his way up, but you’ve got to be ignorant not to wonder if he had any help.

The affect Matthews loss would have on the Packers’ defense would be catastrophic, especially since the team did nothing to bolster the outside linebacker position in the offseason.

I guess now we just sit back and cross our fingers it’s all coincidence.

About The Author

Monty McMahon is one of the founders of Total Packers. He is probably the most famous graduate of UW-Oshkosh next to Jim Gantner.

19 Comments on "Clay Matthews And The White Elephant In The Room"

  1. Realist

    According to what I read he was 165lbs JUNIOR YEAR IN HIGH SCHOOL, before going on a growth spurt. Quite different from walking onto USC at 166lbs. Personally, Senior year of HS was when I put on a good chunk of muscle.

    Regardless I’m as skeptical as you and if I had to guess, I’d say he probably did juice. Let’s just hope he quit the stuff before he got to the NFL.

  2. Realist

    LMAO. I’m quoting your own article from the link “Matthew’s story”:

    “That kind of pedigree might make you think he’s led a charmed life, but Matthews had to fight from the beginning of his college career as a 205-pound walk-on at USC.”

    So first he was 205 when he walked on, but when a friend of his gets busted for roids he was 166? I don’t know why I continue to visit this site.

  3. Tim

    Not to mention that he grew two inches taller during those couple of years. This is actually quite a normal weight gain at that age.

    I started college at 150 and by my junior year I was 185 – and I did very light workouts. And I didn’t get any taller.

  4. Taryn

    The point is with all the drugs that have a banned substance in it’s make-up,it may be impossible not to ingest it one-way-or-another.The difference is the quantity in which you take.Hence by ACCIDENT or DESIRE!!!

  5. Taryn

    A thought for the ponderers out here;Can we be so naive to think that college coaches,scouts,agents are not aware this kids are getting bigger etc,or may be behind the actual PHD’s that increase this so called (FREAKISH) natural talent.How far would this talent drop off if the NFL were able to watch the inside of locker room antics from Junior year on.Mind you I say watch, not offer any info to a player or team.Then if a player is drafted and found to be taking PHD’s,we are now aware of the truth of this FREAKISH TALENT!!! College players who aspire for the NFL should be under the testing scrutiny of the NFL as possible future employees’ of such.

  6. anita

    Well, let’s look at it this way, Rey Rey “We Own the Cops” Maualuga is a drunk driving, class A douchebag. Doesn’t look like Matthews, being his former teammate, is following suit, there.

    My advice to Clay would be to lay low, don’t comment, work your ass off, and change your Twitter background.

    I mean, I’m sure it was an honor being on a regional cover of Sports Illustrated (our region got Quinn, Zbikowski and some other ND dude on the cover that week). But, using that photo as an official Twitter page background, and thus being pictured standing with a cheat and a drunk driver, automatically makes people associate all three guys, and so far, Clay is the only one of the three who has not met with trouble. Clay, I know they’re your friends and “brothers,” but your reputation may take a hit in all this and you may find yourself having to unfairly explain yourself. Don’t invite it. Change the photo!

    How about a nice background dressed in green and gold? Perhaps ripping the ball from AP’s hands?

  7. jeremy

    Maybe he did in college. A lot of them do a few cycles to grow to football size, and then stop because of how awful it is for your body, and how fucked up it makes you feel.

    Is it really hard to believe the guy put on 35 pounds of muscle during 4 years in the USC training program. Besides, he’s not tying to gain weight now. Given his father, grandfather and uncle all had excellent NFL careers, I would say he has the genetics to tip in at 240 without juice.

  8. Taryn

    A nice write Anita and love the idea for Clays’ tweeter page and the dis-associate from the “college brothers” thought.

  9. Wrong. Matthews was 168 his junior year of high school. This is a falsehood that has been unfortunately spread around.he was over 200 by the time he got to the other men in his family he was a late bloomer.

  10. cheesybrat

    Clay was 228 as a walk on at USC and after camp was 220. He was red shirted for awhile and during that time became a workout warrior, not to mention he grew taller while in college. And considering he is now subject to scrunity for achieving success so early in the NFL people will write all sorts of things, so unless you are reporting facts or can site the sources of your reporting you should stick to your usual rants rather than presenting such trash as news!!!

  11. Max vega

    I don’t care of he’s on the juice as long as he doesn’t get caught! He is an awesome player. I think all players should be allowed to juice. Screw it, there just horses for rich owners to sport around till they can’t play anymore. Then there out the door. Do what you got to do, perform, get paid, then enjoy life. I’m sick of all this honor in sports. If your worried about preformance enhancing then they should quit practicing all together, because practicing improves preformance. If you want a real league just have a bunch of sad saps show up at the field every Sunday and make up positions and have some joker just call made up plays and see what happens. Let the players juice andcfnjoy the show. Purists can all go back to 1920 and warch the lame games back then, peace!

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  13. jeff

    yea read that he was 165 has a junior in high school and then had a growth spurt as a senior. you guys really need to get your facts straight

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  16. Barry Bonds

    Classic latern head cheater. He should be thrown out of the NFL. There is no room for these knuckle dragging cheaters, felons, killers, and dog murderers. The league of hypocricy.

  17. Barry Bonds

    To Max Verga… as to them being whores to for the owners… they now make as much as the owners. Millionaire meat heads for the most part. The juiced up roid heads should be thrown out!

  18. Jawline

    Matthews is a beast. Still, what makes me wonder is that big freaking pumpkin sittin’ on his shoulders. Dude has the jawline of the freak from The Mask. It’s the giant noggin and oversized face that makes me wonder if dude is on ‘roids.

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