The Oakland Raiders have cut Matt Flynn, their’s and the Seahawks planned starter over the past 2 years. Flynn was demoted from the backup, and injury replacement for Terrelle Pryor, to third string last week. Being cut leaves the Oakland Raiders with undrafted rookie Matt McGloin as the primary backup for the dual threat Pryor. McGloin and Pryor competed against each other in the Big Ten. The Raiders will reportedly bring in Pat White, out of the league for a 3 seasons, and former #1 pick David Carr. With a running quarterback in Pryor a competent backup is vital.
What led to Flynn’s downfall in both Seattle and Oakland is complicated. Both Pryor and Russell Wilson are more dynamic athletes and out performed Flynn in training camp. In the same way Brandon Weeden outperformed Brian Hoyer, in the eyes of the coaching staff, this year in Browns training camp. Flynn was talked up by his old coach in Green Bay as well as Pete Carroll in Seattle but is now a free agent.
The Browns were linked to Flynn last year when he was a free agent but failed to pursue him. He was expected as a fit in Pat Shurmur’s West Coast offense but the old front office thought otherwise. That his Packer offensive coordinator, Joe Philbin, did not pursue him to his new team Miami Dolphins, is concerning. Yet with injury to Hoyer, the lack of confidence in Weeden and the other option being passed over Jason Campbell could Flynn be an option in Cleveland this year?
Flynn stands the same 6’2″ and weighs 15 pounds more then Hoyer. The two were born 4 months apart, with Flynn the elder and having one more year in the league. While Hoyer was undrafted, Flynn was drafted in the last round of the draft. When Flynn was a free agent in 2012 a writer/scout I respect gave this glowing recommendation:
According to Miller’s system, if Flynn were a rookie coming into the draft, this is what we could expect (rounding him up a tenth of a point, mind you):
Exceptional, first-game starter, will become one of best at his position in NFL
While Flynn isn’t a rookie, he’s about as close as you can get. This statement will accurately describe what Flynn can bring to an NFL team as a free agent.
He’s going to be a stud.
When he was traded to the Raiders he was reviewed quite favorably as well:
Several general managers and scouts told Jeff Diamond of Sports Illustrated last March that Flynn had “good to very good” arm strength, release, accuracy, athleticism and mobility in the pocket. Flynn was also described as a hard worker, smart, composed and competitive. Flynn appears to have the tools to be a success when given a chance.
While he hasn’t worked out in Seattle or Oakland its important to note that Hoyer did not find a home in New England, Pittsburgh or Arizona before becoming the local hero for 2+ games this year.
Compared to Weeden, Flynn releases the ball quickly, can find open receivers and reads the field well. Like Hoyer he lacks arm strength but his command, and experience behind Aaron Rogers should be highly useful. As a fan and analyst Flynn’s talents fit better for the current Browns team then Weeden.
Tomorrow morning we will compare Weeden’s win to what we have seen from Tim Tebow, and why Flynn could be a useful pickup as soon as possible. The link will appear here when posted: Weeden Week 5: A Tim Tebow Win