Despite a report suggesting otherwise, Clay Matthews remains open to playing in 2020.
The Denver Broncos spoke to the linebacker about potentially signing on to help replace Von Miller, who suffered a likely season-ending ankle injury that will require surgery. A report from ESPN stated that Matthews told Denver he was "not going to play."
Not so fast.
In a statement to NFL Network's Mike Garafolo, Matthews' agent, Ryan Williams, rebutted the report, stating that the 34-year-old is interested in signing in the right situation.
"We recently had communication with the Broncos, as we have with other teams during the offseason," Williams said in the statement. "We were under the impression that communication would remain private, but since it did not, let me be clear: We were unable to come to an agreement with Denver, but Clay remains open to playing in the NFL in 2020, provided it's the right opportunity for him and his family."
Perhaps Denver wasn't where Matthews wants to play in 2020. More likely, John Elway wasn't offering enough money to entice the veteran linebacker.
The Los Angeles Rams cut Matthews earlier this offseason but still owe him a $2 million bonus. Any deal he signs would offset portions of that $2 million. So, if the Broncos – or any other team -- weren't offering more than $2 million, he'd essentially be playing for free.
Matthews can always wait to see if a better opportunity with potentially more money presents itself. Maybe he comes back late in the year as a situational rusher on a Super Bowl contender. Or he could always sit out the year like so many others who opted out, collect his $2 million from L.A., and see if he can land a new gig in 2021.