Clay Matthews has Arizona Cardinals LT Jeremy Bridges’ respect : Packers Insider

Clay Matthews has Arizona Cardinals LT Jeremy Bridges’ respect

January 9, 2010 by  
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Jan 9, 2010 ~ By Tom Pelissero, Press-Gazette

~If there were any doubt in Jeremy Bridges’ mind that Green Bay Packers linebacker Clay Matthews was an impact player, Matthews erased them with his performance last week.

Cardinals left tackle Jeremy Bridges, left, had his hands full with Packers linebacker Clay Matthews, trying to keep him away from quarterback Matt Leinart during last Sunday's game in Glendale, Ariz.

Cardinals left tackle Jeremy Bridges, left, had his hands full with Packers linebacker Clay Matthews, trying to keep him away from quarterback Matt Leinart during last Sunday's game in Glendale, Ariz.

Matthews drew two holding calls, one of which resulted in a safety, and had a career-high seven hits on the Arizona Cardinals’ quarterbacks. Three of those came on one drive against Bridges, a longtime rotational player at guard who took over at left tackle when the Cardinals put veteran Mike Gandy (sports hernia) on injured reserve on Dec. 23.

“He’s good,” Bridges said on Friday of Matthews, the first-round draft pick who has recorded 19 of his team-leading 35 QB hits in the past five games.

“He’s got a lot to learn, but as far as just ability, raw ability, the kid’s fast, quick, strong. He’s going to be one of the good ones.”

There’s a good argument to be made Matthews already falls into that category.

After missing most of the preseason with a hamstring injury, he took over as the starter at right outside linebacker in the Packers’ fourth game, ended up leading the team with 10 sacks, received a Pro Bowl invitation and only seems to be expanding his pass-rushing repertoire as the season goes on.

Look no further than the array of moves he used against the Cardinals in last week’s regular-season finale. He beat Bridges with speed moves off the edge, gave left guard Reggie Wells trouble on stunts and even displayed some uncommon power by flattening rookie running back Beanie Wells late.        Full article here

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