Raiders: Why Acquiring Matt Flynn Was the Right Move


Aug 11, 2012; Seattle, WA, USA; NFL: Seattle Seahawks quarterback Matt Flynn (15) waits for a play call in the huddle against the Tennessee Titans during the second quarter at CenturyLink Field. Mandatory Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

It’s about damn time.

Raiders fans have been patiently waiting for this back-and-forth mayhem to be resolved between their team and the Seattle Seahawks. It was being heavily reported that the Raiders were on pace to acquire Matt Flynn for some draft picks, and that news is finally official. 

The picks that Seattle will receive are late-round selections in the 2014 and 2015 drafts, while Oakland lands their 27-year-old presumable starting quarterback.

But was acquiring Flynn the right move? I believe so.

Flynn is a guy who has been in the league for five years and has never been more than a backup. But that is all about to change once he sets foot in Oakland.

It’s hard to get playing time when you’re the backup to Aaron Rodgers, but it serves as a great learning opportunity to play behind one of the greatest quarterbacks to ever play the game. Working with him in practice and watching his every move from the Packers’ sidelines provided Flynn with a great opportunity to take mental notes and then apply those mechanics to his own game, while staying patient for his moment to come.

Well, in the summer of 2012, it looked like Flynn’s moment had finally arrived, as he signed a three-year deal with the Seattle Seahawks that was worth over $19.5 million. He was one of the most highly-coveted free agents last summer and many, including myself, believed that he would become the definitive starting quarterback of the Seahawks.

Fast forward to the  2012 NFL Draft, when the Seahawks drafted Wisconsin quarterback Russell Wilson in the third round, and we all know what happens from there.

Wilson outplayed Flynn in training camp and the preseason and was eventually named the starter for their season opener. The rookie quarterback continued his strong play throughout the season and solidified himself as not only the starting quarterback, but the face of the franchise. Flynn was stuck in yet another backup role.

But with Flynn now out of Seattle and on his way to Oakland, it seems like  the perfect scenario for him. A quarterback who has served as a backup for two teams his entire career, one of them he played under the legendary Aaron Rodgers, and the other played behind a rookie quarterback who beat him in training camp and the preseason to take over his job. Doesn’t it just seem like the stars are lining up for Flynn to take over the reigns of the Raiders’ offense?

My point is, Flynn is more than ready for this moment. He’s been watching from the sidelines for too long and he should be just about fed up with doing so.

Well, it turns out that Flynn, a hungry quarterback who has been fishing for his opportunity to become a starter, has landed with a team that is desperate for a starting quarterback.

Carson Palmer, who has made it clear that he will not restructure his contract with the Oakland Raiders for a third straight year, is likely on his way out of Oakland. According to ESPN’s NFL Insider Adam Schefter, the Raiders are trying to ship Palmer away to Arizona, who have been highly interested over the last few days.

One of the biggest reasons that acquiring Flynn was such a success for the Raiders is that Palmer is finally going to be out of Oakland.

Palmer had a  tumultuous stint with the Silver and Black, and he never really gained much appreciation from the fans. Good luck with him, Arizona.

Also, acquiring Flynn will now help put some pressure on Terrelle Pryor, and make him compete even harder for the starting job. Pryor, who is excited about the trade himself, knows that he will have to put his best foot forward and prove to the organization that he is their guy.

If he is unable to do so, then Flynn will lead the Oakland offense into the 2013-2014 season with every reason to keep his head held high. He will have finally earned the right to start at quarterback for an NFL team, and hopefully the Raiders will see more games like this from the young man.

Another key component to acquiring Flynn, is that Oakland now does not have to look at any young quarterbacks in this year’s NFL Draft. It was reported a while ago that Oakland was looking into West Virginia quarterback Geno Smith, but that idea should be completely banished from the minds of the Raiders’ front office now. The Raiders can now use their third overall pick in the 2013 NFL Draft, along with their other picks, to bolster their defense and fill in the gaps that have been empty for so long.

All in all, the Raiders took a big step in the right direction this morning, as they acquired a young quarterback who is ready to prove his doubters wrong. I believe Flynn will outshine Terrelle Pryor and win over the starting job, but you just never know in this league. But if there’s one thing that we know for sure, it’s that these two quarterbacks will be going after one another. Both want the starting job with all their hearts and it will be exciting to see who will take over the reigns of the Oakland Raiders’ offense next season.