With the franchise tag deadline rapidly approaching (March 5 for those of you following along at home), the question remains whether or not the Green Bay Packers will use it on backup quarterback Matt Flynn in order to trade him to another team for value rather than simply giving him away in free agency.
Doing so is a gamble; the franchise tag for quarterbacks this year is just over $14 million, so it's not likely the Packers would franchise Flynn without an interested trading partner already lined up.
However, Packers blogger Marques Eversoll put forth an alternate scenario for the Flynn trade, one that CheeseheadTV.com examined closely yesterday: What if the Packers franchised Flynn and orchestrated a trade that includes both him and the team's No. 28 first round draft pick?
Doing so could put the Packers in the top 10 in the first round in the draft, able to snag practically any and every target (presumably a defensive player) they have on their most-wanted list.
The Miami Dolphins are considered to be a top landing spot for Flynn, as their head coach Joe Philbin was most recently the Packers' offensive coordinator and, coincidentally, have the eighth overall pick in this year's draft.
Eversoll cites the NFL's Draft Pick Value chart, saying that the No. 8 overall pick is worth 1,400 points, while the Packers' No. 28 pick is worth 660. Assuming that the difference in value between the two—740 points, the equivalent of the No. 24 pick in the first round—is what the Dolphins believe Flynn is worth, then there may be grounds for the trade.
This way, the Packers can move up in the draft to take one of their most prized targets, the Dolphins get their much-needed quarterback and yet still have a pick in the first round.
It's a pretty solid hypothetical strategy, one that, at least on the surface, looks like a win-win for both sides. However, a number of things would have to fall into place in the next six days for this to happen.
First, the Dolphins and Philbin would have to be highly interested in Flynn, something that has yet to be truly confirmed. Second, the Packers would have to be willing to franchise Flynn at that expensive price with the knowledge that they can in fact trade him.
Surely if anyone knows whether Flynn is worth the equivalent of a 24th overall pick, it would be Philbin.
If he does view Flynn that way, the Packers packaging Flynn and their first rounder would be a surefire way to get their most desired draft pick, while the Dolphins receive ostensibly their most desired quarterback.