It's time to let Tarvaris Jackson go.
It's simply unfair to go through the charade of including him in a quarterback competition everyone knows he will not win. And it's just as unfair to make him battle a rookie for a backup spot, when it seems obvious Pete Carroll favors the rookie.
Let Jackson go find another team where he might be able to be the backup quarterback. If Carroll does not let him go before training camp, Jackson will end up out on the street when the Seahawks inevitably cut him at some point in camp. And that's just not fair to a guy who toughed it out like Jackson did last season and has played the good soldier this offseason.
It was already clear that the Seahawks were not satisfied with Jackson (and rightfully so). That's why they signed Matt Flynn. But then they did something crazy: They fell in love with Russell Wilson—so much that they drafted him in the third round. And their love grew more profound when he put on a clinic at their rookie camp last weekend.
Carroll went so far as to say Wilson will compete with Flynn and Jackson for the starting job. “He’s showed us enough,” he told reporters (via The News Tribune). “He’s in the competition."
Of course, everyone knows that is bunk. It's just Positive Pete getting excited about a player who has a lot of positive attributes.
Carroll admitted the folly of a three-man race, saying, "That is going to tax us, as you know. It was already going to be taxing with two. But he’s shown us enough that we need to see where he fits in with these guys.”
It's impossible not to like Wilson, who has every intangible you could want in a quarterback. And if he were 6'2", he might have been a first-round pick.
But it's also nearly impossible to think he could beat out Flynn—an accomplished NFL backup who comes from perhaps the greatest quarterback program in the NFL.
Carroll's talk about Wilson being the starter is silly. It's along the same lines of what he did at USC, where he tried to talk up a competition as if some young guy was going to challenge Heisman winners Carson Palmer and Matt Leinart. In an interview with 710 ESPN recently, he admitted he made up the idea just so no one got too comfortable but that there was never a chance of those guys getting beat out.
In Seattle, even though Flynn has started all of two NFL games, he is the guy. To talk as if a rookie is going to beat him out is nonsense.
It is not hard, however, to see Wilson as the backup—especially as much as the Seahawks' brass loves him.
So, as tough as it might be to cut Jackson loose after he sacrificed last season, it really is the appropriate thing to do.
Carroll knows Jackson won't beat out Flynn. And he suspects strongly that Wilson is good enough to be the No. 2 quarterback now.
The Hawks can wait until the June minicamp to make sure they are still high on Wilson, but they should let Jackson go after that.
If they bring three quarterbacks to training camp and give each an equal opportunity, the offense will suffer and the development will be delayed for weeks, if not months.
For Jackson's sake and for the good of the Seahawks, Carroll needs to let the veteran go now.
See how the Seahawks' draft could have turned out if they had not reached for Bruce Irvin.