LOS ANGELES (CBSLA/AP) — Rams linebacker Clay Matthews will be out for several weeks after breaking his jaw during their loss to the Seattle Seahawks.
Matthews was hurt while attempting to tackle Seattle running back Chris Carson with about 3:20 left in the Rams’ 30-29 defeat Thursday night. Carson’s back foot inadvertently kicked Matthews in the face while Carson evaded the tackle.
Rams coach Sean McVay revealed the injury to his club’s sacks leader Friday after the team’s return to California.
“That’s not good for us,” McVay said. “That’s a big injury. He is going to require surgery on that, so he is going to be out for an extended period of time. At least a month.”
The Rams (3-2) have three more games before their bye.
The 33-year-old Matthews is off to an excellent start in his first season with his hometown team following 10 years with the Green Bay Packers.
He has six sacks in his first five games, including the only sack by either team in the Rams’ loss at Seattle. Matthews also has a team-leading nine tackles for loss among his 19 total tackles, and he has forced two fumbles.
“He’s a tough guy, but it was a physical game,” McVay said. “It was something that you just hate for him because of how productive he’s been for us and what he’s meant to our team and all the things that he’s done. It’s going to be a big loss. Guys are going to be asked to step up in his absence.”
Samson Ebukam is likely to step into Matthews’ starting role as an edge rusher, McVay said.
Ebukam has played in every game for the Rams during his 2½ seasons with the club, excelling on special teams and playing a supporting role on defense. He famously scored touchdowns on a fumble return and an interception return during the Rams’ epic 54-51 victory over Kansas City last season.
Another Ram is also coping with an injury. McVay also announced that wide receiver Brandin Cooks has been placed in concussion protocol.
Cooks fell down hard on his shoulder following a one-handed catch in the fourth quarter of Thursday’s game, but was “feeling good” on Friday according to McVay.
“He was asymptomatic today and that was a positive thing for us,” McVay said.
The Rams next game is at home against the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday, October 13. Kick-off is at 1:05 PM PDT.
(© Copyright 2019 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)