Seattle Seahawks

Seattle Seahawks: Evaluating Matt Flynn Trade to Raiders

SEATTLE, WA - NOVEMBER 04: Matt Flynn #15 of the Seattle Seahawks warms up before a game against the Minnesota Vikings at CenturyLink Field on November 4, 2012 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Stephen Brashear/Getty Images)
Stephen Brashear/Getty Images
Todd PheiferAnalyst IIIApril 2, 2013

After much speculation, the Seattle Seahawks traded backup quarterback Matt Flynn to the Oakland Raiders. The Seahawks receive a fifth-round pick in the 2014 NFL draft and a conditional pick in the 2015 draft (via ESPN.com).

And there was much rejoicing.

The compensation may be disappointing to some fans, but it is hardly surprising. As much as Flynn was hyped before signing a free-agent deal with Seattle before last season, he remains an unproven talent in the NFL.

Flynn may finally get an opportunity to show what he is worth.

The ‘Hawks were not going to get Alex Smith compensation (via Yahoo! Sports) given Smith’s experience and accomplishments. Trades for draft picks just do not typically solicit huge returns in the NFL.

Where do the Seahawks go from here to fill their new vacancy? Probably the bargain bin.

As noted by The Seattle Post-Intelligencer, the Seahawks have a “plan.” John Schneider was quoted as saying:

“We have a plan and we’re gonna take it as it comes. We’re not gonna force anything and we’re not gonna get in a situation where we have our hands tied.”

Can I translate that for you? The Seahawks are banking on Russell Wilson staying healthy and productive. Period.

Assuming Wilson continues his growth, there is little worry about having a high-profile backup quarterback. Of course, that is all well and good until your starter gets hurt. Then, the backup is suddenly the most crucial position on the field.

The Post-Intelligencer mentions a couple of inexpensive veterans, such as Tyler Thigpen and Pete Carroll’s old pal, Matt Leinart. These are not names that are necessarily going to generate a great deal of excitement.

Truthfully, the appeal of these types of players is that they are cheap and not rookies. Is that too harsh?

Schneider used phrases such as “take it as it comes” and “not gonna force anything” because these quarterback options will probably be available next week. And next month. And probably right before training camp.

In other words, teams are not necessarily clamoring to sign Tyler Thigpen to a lucrative deal. If Thigpen and Matt Leinart were signed by other teams, there would arguably be a number of other veteran QBs that will be looking for work.

Realistically the Flynn deal was a cost-cutting measure. As tweeted by John Clayton:

For those worried about giving up Matt Flynn, his trade puts the Seahawks under the cap in 2014. A lot of key contract come up in next 2 yrs

— John Clayton (@ClaytonESPN) April 1, 2013

In other words, would you rather have a quality backup quarterback or a better chance at long-term deals for your talented secondary? Not exactly a hard decision.

Goodbye, Matt Flynn. Best wishes. We barely got to know you.

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