Matt Flynn Rumors: Raiders Need to Focus on Draft Instead of Seahawks QB
UPDATE: Monday, April 1, at 11:15 a.m. ET by Rob Goldberg
It appears that the Raiders have gone ahead and made the trade to acquire the Seahawks quarterback, according to Jay Glazer of Fox Sports:
OAK has traded 2 picks to Seattle for Matt Flynn, will sign papers on it this AM & now trying to finalize Carson Palmer to AZ for late pick— Jay Glazer (@JayGlazer) April 1, 2013
The 2 picks the Raiders sent for Flynn are in 2014 and 2015 draft. Both are later rounds— Jay Glazer (@JayGlazer) April 1, 2013
Only time will tell if this is the right move for the organization.
---End of Update---
According to Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk, that is exactly what the team is looking to do. He writes, "The widespread belief for now is that the [Flynn to the Raiders] trade will indeed get done, and that it will happen soon. The two teams have haggled over draft-pick compensation."
Peter King of Sports Illustrated (via Rotoworld) reports that the deal will likely feature a 2014 "mid-round pick."
This appears to be a colossal mistake for Oakland.
The last time the Raiders made a draft picks-for-quarterback trade, they ended up overpaying for Carson Palmer by giving up a first- and second-round pick.
While the quarterback did have some good days in silver and black, his nine-game streak of at least one interception helped contribute to the downfall of the 2012 season. With Palmer at the helm, Oakland finished with the seventh-fewest points in the NFL.
In reality, it is unlikely that the 33-year-old veteran was going to be enough to bring the squad back to the postseason. Even if he did, it is clear that he is not the long-term solution.
The next option is Terrelle Pryor, the young player from Ohio State selected in the 2011 supplemental draft. However, even in his college years, the quarterback never showed that he has the accuracy necessary to succeed as a full-time player in the NFL.
Instead, Pryor best projects as a change-of-pace player that can come in and surprise defenses with his speed. It is best not to go into a season with him as the starter.
This is why Flynn looks appealing as a trade target. He showed plenty of success when he was on the field, including one very impressive performance against the Detroit Lions two years ago when he threw for 480 yards and six touchdowns.
Should the Raiders draft a quarterback in the first round?
Unfortunately, that one game represents 44 percent of his career passing yards and 66 percent of his career touchdowns. You really need more than one good performance to justify making him the next starter.
The Seattle Seahawks tried to turn that one game into a career, and he never even made one start. Instead, the squad focused on the draft and selected a player that will probably be the quarterback for a long time in Russell Wilson.
In this upcoming draft, Oakland needs to do the same. While this quarterback class is not as strong as last season's, there are still some talented players available.
Geno Smith is an incredibly accurate passer (completed 71.2 percent of passes last season) who makes few mistakes (42-6 touchdown-to-interception ratio). He also showed great mobility during pre-draft workouts.
Many other players in this class have potential to be great starters. From Matt Barkley to Ryan Nassib to Tyler Wilson, there are plenty of talented players available who could be big-time players at the next level.
Most importantly, each of these players is young and has the ability to be the face of the franchise for the next decade. On the other hand, Flynn is already 27 years old and has only two career starts.
While it is not a guarantee, making a trade for a decent draft pick would likely force the Raiders to at least try Flynn out as a starter. Seattle did not feel that pressure, although the organization probably now regrets bringing him in in the first place.
The Raiders need a quarterback who will be a long-term fix at the position. Instead of wasting time developing Flynn, they should instead develop a rookie with a much higher ceiling.
Oakland cannot wait around any longer. The team must draft a quarterback in the first round to save the franchise. Any trade at this point simply hinders that possibility.
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