The Packers' charity softball game Satuday turned into a scary situation when a line drive back up the middle hit linebacker Clay Matthews squarely in the face. Matthews, however, avoided a serious injury.
According to Matthews himself, he "busted" his nose and will eventually need surgery.
Thank you for all the concern and well-wishes. I busted my nose pretty good and will have surgery once the swelling subsides. Thankful as it could have been much more serious 🙏🏼🙏🏼🙏🏼— Clay Matthews III (@ClayMatthews52) June 2, 2018
Matthews, who was pitching, dropped to the ground after getting hit by the ball. Covering his face with his glove, Matthews got up off the ground immediately and walked off the field.
Immediately after, NFL Network's Ian Rapoport reported that Matthews went to the emergency room for a full checkup to make sure that he didn't suffer any additional injuries. But as Matthews said, the damage was limited to a busted-up nose.
In the words of Matthews' teammate Davante Adams, Matthews suffered "a little boo boo on his nose."
That's both an unfortunate break for the Packers (what are the odds someone gets hurt at a charity softball game?) and a fortunate outcome (it looked like the injury could've been significantly worse than a broken nose).
Matthews, 32, is entering his 10th year with the Packers. During his career, he's racked up 80 sacks and 337 solo tackles. He might not be the dominant force he was once earlier in his career -- he's coming off a 7.5-sack season -- but he's still an important cog in the Packers' defense, which is finally undergoing a transition after2018 is the final year of Matthews' contract, so it's a big season for him.
In the meantime,, teams and players might want to start giving pitchers some protective netting on the mound. If the NFL can make an effort to protect defenseless players, charity softball games can too.
Most importantly, Matthews' team appeared to overcome the injury to their captain. They beat Adams' team with a walk-off home-run.