Former University of Kentucky wide receiver Chris Matthews was promoted from the practice squad by the Baltimore Ravens on Saturday.
It was a timely move. If he’s active for Sunday’s game against the Seattle Seahawks, he could face the team that released him earlier this season.
Not that he’s looking for revenge. He’s more concerned with proving last year’s breakthrough performance in the Super Bowl wasn’t a fluke.
Matthews, a 6-foot-5, 218-pound wide receiver who went undrafted out of Kentucky and spent time in the Arena Football League and Canadian Football League, caught four passes for 109 yards and a touchdown in the Seahawks’ Super Bowl loss to the New England Patriots. He had never caught an NFL pass before that game.
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“I don’t even dwell on the Super Bowl,” Matthews said in a report on the Baltimore Ravens’ website. “I don’t want to be that guy who was great in that game and everywhere else he wasn’t that good. I want to be the guy that took off from there and never looked back. That’s what I’m going to keep working towards.”
Matthews said he wasn’t supposed to be part of the offensive game plan against the Patriots.
“Not even close,” he told BaltimoreRavens.com. “All I was focused on was special teams. The first catch that I had, I was running a decoy route and [Russell Wilson] actually threw me the ball. I just reacted on it.”
“Chris Matthews is a tremendous football player,” Wilson said in the Ravens’ report. “In terms of the Super Bowl, the guy made just unbelievable plays, and he has all the ability; he has the makeup, too, as well. He’s a hardworking guy. He’s a guy that has a lot of talent. I’m rooting for him.”
The Seahawks’ depth at wide receiver led to Matthews’ release, Seattle Coach Pete Carroll said. Matthews had made four catches for 54 yards in nine games.
“I called him when I heard the unfortunate news for us, and I just told him he’s going to be a great football player,” Wilson said. “Just being around him was such a pleasure. I’m really, really rooting for him to be successful.”
Ravens Coach John Harbaugh said he’s been “very impressed” with Matthews in practice. With fellow wideout Marlon Brown (back injury) listed as doubtful for Sunday’s game, Matthews could be called into action.
“He’s a very serious guy, works hard, goes up and makes plays, and he’s done a good job,” Harbaugh said. “We’ll see if he can play this week or not. I don’t think him having been in Seattle determines whether he plays or not. It’s just whether he’s up to speed in the offense. That’s really the bottom line, and if we have the spot for him to play.”
Seahawks at Ravens