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2012 NFL Free Agent Profile: Matt Flynn

The Redskins QB situation was, in short, the most exciting story besides the lockout last season. Unfortunately, it was a controversy between: ‘Sexy Rexy' Grossman and John ‘Janitor' Beck (Not because he cleaned house with his amazing passing abilities). Throughout the season, my roommates and I referred to an article on Kissing Suzy Colber about Rex and his ‘gunslinger' m.o. every time he would do something stupid. Hopefully next season we won't have to make jokes to push aside our sadness and depression when our signal-caller drops back to pass. Hopefully, that signal caller is Matt Flynn.

Matt Flynn surprised everyone last season when he opened in lieu of Aaron Rodgers (out for concussion) against New England. Flynn and the Packers had done everything right: 11-for-19 on 3rd down, 13 passing 1st downs, 226 passing yards, and 40:48 time of possession. The Packers lost the game due to a 70+ yard kickoff return by offensive lineman Dan Connolly.

Enter the 2012 season. Once again, Flynn sat idly by as Aaron Rodgers picked apart defense after defense (aside from a few games...erm, Kansas City?). After a 14-1 record, the Packers were a shoe-in for the Playoffs, and decide to sit Aaron, and rightfully so. Flynn again gets the starting job late in the season, and not only improves on his last start, blows scouts and critics away with his play against the Detroit Lions. Flynn threw for 480 yards and 6 TD's with 70% accuracy. Granted, Aaron Rodgers was on the sideline calling plays for him, it was out of Flynn's hand that the ball was thrown.

Getting film for Flynn wasn't hard, finding variety was.

Let's take a short look at mechanics as a QB. (I am going to utilize Greg Cosell's formula here, with some tweaks of my own):


Pre/Post-Snap Reads: Generally does well with pre-snap defensive reads. Many times a game you'll see him switching up protection assignments or adjusting the play (usually works in his favor). He's usually able to see a defense adjust post-snap, and can even take advantage. He does, however, like to get fixated on one receiver.


In this play, Nelson is running a deep post, and Detroit will drop a safety (too late) to cover the long-ball. This is an instance of Flynn getting fixated on one receiver, though it works out in his favor. Another item of note is, Flynn doesn't recognize pressure from the backside, luckily he gets the ball out fast. Tim Tebow gets annihilated with his super-slow release right here. This can also be a testament to his arm. Even though the long-ball isn't his best weapon, he is still able to put some distance on the board.

Result: Touchdown



Arm Strength/Accuracy: Sometimes floats the deep ball a little too much giving time for a safety to come under it and doesn't really place the ball where it needs to be. He's generally accurate at short to medium passes, which is relatively a good thing for the Redskins' system.


Right here we have Driver and Jennings wide left. Jennings and Driver will cross, with Jennings gaining a half-step on his man.


Play-Action. Flynn, under pressure, delivers a perfect ball to Jennings.

Result: Touchdown


Pocket Presence: Seems like he can recognize a pass rush. He just doesn't have the footwork at this juncture to avoid it. That comes with experience in games, though. In his two games vs NE and DET, both had highly touted pass rushers, and a poorly organized secondary. He put up great numbers. I am only wondering what they would look like against the opposite? He has some good poise under-center. It looks like he isn't going to lose control under pressure and force something that doesn't need to be forced.


Here we see Flynn's pocket collapsing. He has James Jones moving hard down the right sideline in double coverage. Let's see if he checks down.


He doesn't panic. Instead, takes a subtle step to the right getting into a throwing lane, and fires downfield to Jones. Hits him in stride.

Result: Touchdown.


There are also intangibles like leadership ability and media presence that I am unable but would like to be able to assess for Flynn. After all, it's not just a QB that the Redskins need, it's a franchise face.

Green Bay has a few options in terms of what to do with him. No matter what, any team that signs Flynn will have to put up a lengthy deal, and we'll be getting to that tomorrow morning. There won't be any Rex Grossman-esque 1-year contracts to weigh his options, to say the least.

Going to the FA pool fix the QB situation this year, seems like the best route to me. Especially being that my favorite of the rookies, Tannehill, has a broken foot. QB's that do great in College did just that: Great in College. Matt Flynn played college ball and has also proven he can be effective (at least in the Packers' scheme) at the pro-level. It's not his experience on the field that I want so bad. It's the experience of learning behind Rodgers. I think that is his best bargaining chip.

A lot of fans are going to argue to go after RGIII, but to be honest, I would rather have a guy that has already played in college and has also learned the professional game instead of being spoiled as a rookie.

Matt Flynn is definitely going to be a target for a couple of NFL front offices. The Redskins, Dolphins, Seahawks, and Browns will likely all give him more than just a look over. And the Dolphins have almost no ability, nor means to trade up for Griffin (Or Luck...but Duh). As a Redskin, he would definitely be an improvement over Rex or Beck, but I would still use a late draft pick to secure a QB. You never know, you may have Flynn at the helm, and the next Brady, Brees, or Stafford riding the bench. It's a crap-shoot.

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