NFL: Clay Matthews' Roughing the Passer Penalty on Alex Smith Was Correct Call

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistSeptember 23, 2018

LANDOVER, MD - SEPTEMBER 23:  Clay Matthews #52 of the Green Bay Packers hits quarterback Alex Smith #11 of the Washington Redskins in the first half at FedExField on September 23, 2018 in Landover, Maryland. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
Rob Carr/Getty Images

Green Bay Packers linebacker Clay Matthews will likely argue with his latest penalty flag for roughing the passer, but the NFL says it was the correct call.

The veteran was called for a 15-yard penalty in the third quarter of Sunday's game against the Washington Redskins after sacking Alex Smith. According to NFL Football Operations, the officials followed the rules correctly:

Packers coach Mike McCarthy was furious with the call and was seen screaming at a referee: 

Matthews was also called for roughing the passer in Week 2 against the Minnesota Vikings, which turned out to be a game-changing play in an eventual 29-29 tie.

While he wasn't fined, he called it a "terrible call" after the game, per Rob Demovsky of ESPN.

Fans, coaches and players around the league have been confused about the changes to the rulebook this season that have led to more personal foul calls in the name of player safety. Matthews falls in that category, and he likely won't be happy about this ruling either.

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