Written by Jeff Savage
Clay Matthews is one of the star defensive players in the National Football League. His fearless playing style and physical size make him a beast on the field. However, Matthews was not always a defensive powerhouse, as Jeff Savage’s biography explains.
Savage’s biography starts with an action-packed football play that is sure to grab readers’ attention. He then goes on to create a basic overview of Matthews’ life, focusing on his childhood as part of a pro-football dynasty to his daring efforts to be a star on his college football team. Savage portrays Matthews as an inspiring figure who was thought to be too small to be a successful defensive player. It was only Matthews’ determination and hard work that brought him to the attention of college and professional coaches and eventually led to his vital plays on the Green Bay Packers team that won the Super Bowl in 2011.
Matthews’ story is interesting both for football fans and for students who will respond to his underdog status and self-made rise to success and Savage is an experienced sports writer who knows how to tell a good story. This book is a great choice for third-grade readers. Football fans will love the story, the action, and the specific details from games, along with the dramatic photographs of Matthews in action. The text is simple and straightforward, making this a good choice for independent reading or as a source for creative reading and writing activities. Back matter includes a list of Matthews’ career highlights, a glossary, and a list of books and Websites for more information, making this book a solid choice for book reports or research projects. I recommend Clay Matthews as a strong addition to any third-grade reading list.