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Friday, September 13, 2013
Clay Matthews fined $15,000

By Rob Demovsky
ESPN.com

GREEN BAY, Wis. -- Green Bay Packers linebacker Clay Matthews was fined $15,000 for his late hit against San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick during the teams' opener Sunday, an NFL spokesman confirmed to ESPN.com on Friday.

The hit came at the end of a Kaepernick scramble near the sideline in the second quarter of the 49ers' 34-28 victory. The play ignited a scuffle on the sideline, and 49ers tackle Joe Staley was penalized for unsportsmanlike conduct. The league later said Staley should not have been flagged, and he was not fined, the league spokesman said.

The play angered 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh, who on Monday described Matthews' hit as a "clothesline to the neck area when our quarterback's six, seven feet out of bounds."

On Friday, reporters asked 49ers guard Alex Boone what fine he'd have given Matthews. "Probably just a punch in the face," he quipped.

After the game, Matthews conceded it was not a smart play. On Thursday, a day before the fine was announced, he said he didn't want to discuss the play.

"Next game!" Matthews yelled and then smiled. "I'm an awesome player, not a dirty player."

Matthews said he could recall being fined only one other time for an on-field incident, a $5,000 fine for a facemask penalty against Chicago Bears quarterback Jay Cutler in 2010.

"I think my résumé is pretty good right now," Matthews said. "I think we're doing all right."

From the same game, 49ers linebacker Ahmad Brooks was fined $12,750 for roughing Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers, and 49ers receiver Anquan Boldin was docked $7,875 for a late hit on safety Jarrett Bush.

ESPN.com 49ers reporter Bill Williamson contributed to this report.