GREEN BAY, WI - DECEMBER 7: Clay Matthews #52 of the Green Bay Packers celebrates after he sacked Joe Flaco #5 of the Baltimore Ravens in the first half at Lambeau Field on December 7, 2009 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Matthews is set for a bump in pay from escalators in his rookie deal, but with Matthews slated to be a free agent in 2014, the Packers need to get a deal done or risk losing their playmaking linebacker.
According to Tom Silverstein of jsonline.com, Matthews is in the drivers seat and Green Bay will have to step up to the table, Silverstein writes:
‘Matthews ranks eighth on the team in highest salary cap number trailing, in order: Aaron Rodgers ($9.75M), Jermichael Finley ($8.75M), Tramon Williams ($8.5M), A.J. Hawk ($7.05M), Ryan Pickett ($6.7M), B.J. Raji ($6.595M) and Josh Sitton ($5.55M).
Given he's made the Pro Bowl each of his first four seasons, Matthews has a pretty good case to be the second-highest paid player on the team and it's likely his agent and the Packers will have contract discussions at the scouting combine in Indianapolis this week.
Matthews is entering the final year of a five-year deal worth around $10 million and the Packers probably will have to make him one of the highest-paid linebackers in the NFL to get him to commit to a long-term deal.’