After the Seattle Seahawks signed Matt Flynn over the offseason, many thought he would immediately come in and claim the starting spot.
Except that’s not the way Pete Carroll goes about it.
There was a three-man competition for the starting quarterback spot during OTAs featuring Flynn, incumbent Tarvaris Jackson and rookie Russell Wilson.
After the Hawks rewarded Flynn with a three-year, $26 million contract, it would make sense that he would have a leg up on the other two.
However, Carroll has maintained that the competition is open, and there is no indication that any of the three have an advantage over the other two.
Carroll even fanned the flames after the team completed their three-day rookie minicamp.
Carroll surprised fans when he tossed Wilson’s name into the competition after he impressed during the camp, according to ESPN.
The question remains if Wilson is truly an adequate option to start at quarterback.
In my opinion, he is not. The kid is only 23 and has never taken an NFL snap.
He stands only 5’11”, and I think Carroll was more interested in drumming up attention than truly making a quarterback decision.
It wasn’t a bad decision in the slightest for Carroll, who knows exactly what he’s doing when it comes to his quarterback.
According to the Seattle Time’s Danny O’Neil, Carroll simply wants to see how his quarterbacks, especially Flynn, respond to the competition.
If Flynn can come in and respond to the competition, I’m sure the starting job is his to lose.
However, if Flynn cracks under the pressure, the Seahawks will be left with another season of watching Jackson’s mediocre play.
Through OTAs, all three quarterbacks have split reps with one another.
Carroll also has not revealed virtually anything regarding the competition, telling the Seattle Times the decision will not be made until after a few exhibition games.
“I know we're going to need the games to see stuff because these guys are going to do really well,” Carroll said to the Seattle Times.
Nonetheless, Flynn had a leg up on the competition after the first day, as he was able to stay away from turnovers, unlike the other two, according to the Seattle Times.
Wilson fumbled a snap as well as threw an interception. Jackson also threw an interception and took a sack.
Flynn showed good command of the offense, according to the Seattle Times, and was making big gains down the field.
After the Hawks finished last season averaging a mundane 194.1 yards passing per game, Flynn’s ability to make big plays should give him another advantage.
The Seahawks know exactly what they have with Jackson.
Jackson led the team to a 7-7 record as a starter last season, and he is 17-17 as a starter in his NFL career.
He finished last season with 14 touchdown passes to 13 interceptions, and according to ESPN’s Mike Sando (via 710ESPN), Jackson should be more of an insurance policy than anything.
Sando also said Flynn has “done fine without wowing.”
Seahawks fans are certainly ready for their quarterback to come in and wow, and I think Flynn will be able to do that as he becomes more accustomed to Seattle’s offense.
Regardless of who is under center for Seattle in 2012, they will have the luxury of relying on Seattle’s solid rushing attack.
Marshawn Lynch, who finished with 1,204 rushing yards and 12 touchdowns last season, will definitely be able to take some of the offensive burden off of the quarterback.
Furthermore, they will be playing with a defense that ranked seventh in points allowed last season, surrendering a measly 19.7 points per game.
At this point, all signs point to Flynn, but it is simply too early to pencil in the starter.
According to Brock Huard (via 710ESPN), Flynn is the favorite to be under center during Week 1.
Flynn has shown promise in his small sample as an NFL starter, including a historic six-touchdown performance against the Lions in Week 17.
If Flynn can replicate the promise he showed in Green Bay, the Seahawks could be in for a quick ascension toward the top of the NFC West.
However, if Flynn is not the answer, Seattle may be in dire condition.
If Flynn is not the long-term answer, the Hawks would then have to rely on an unproven rookie as the team’s next quarterback.
The hope is that Flynn can come in and get a good grasp of the offense with Jackson being his insurance policy (barring injury).
Nonetheless, with Carroll at the helm, no one will know who the starting quarterback will be until Week 1.