Randy Schwimmer examines the QB competition in Seattle for The Football Educator.
Notable Training Camp Happenings
Training camp marks the unofficial start of the NFL season. Football fans patiently wait from February through July every year in anticipation of the upcoming season and the new prospect of having a winning team. Training camp is a great way for fans to take a peek at their favorite teams to see if they’ve managed to keep the momentum they had last season, and/or what new things they’ve done to improve for the upcoming season. Training camp brings big battles for the fans to preview: players vying for a position on the team, competing for the starting position and a chance sharpen up their skills for the upcoming season.
For example, if a team is dealing with a quarterback controversy, fans are interested in who is playing better and each player’s strengths and weaknesses. This interest is what usually brings the most competitive hype and news coverage. Other interesting and newsworthy occurrences are the veteran players getting into free agency and relocating to new teams. All of the new and exciting changes in each team are a part of what makes each year’s training camp newsworthy and important. I am exploring some of the notable training camp happenings this season.
Seattle Seahawks Quarterback Position Battle:
- Matt Flynn
- Russell Wilson
- Tarvaris Jackson
The Seattle Seahawks have one of the more intriguing quarterback controversies currently in the league. Pete Carroll landed Matt Flynn from the Green Bay Packers in Free Agency. Flynn showed off his skills during his two starting games in Green Bay, particularly during his second game, which was the final regular season game against the Detroit Lions at Lambeau Field. Flynn played lights out all game, with Aaron Rogers calling the plays, and put up 5 touchdown passes against a defense that was touted as being fierce with a strong defensive line.
Flynn was likely thinking ahead, knowing he would be hitting free agency in a few months, this would create some insurance for a sizeable contract after the performance he put up against Detroit. Once free agency started, Flynn first visited with his old offensive coordinator, Joe Philbin, who had just taken the head coaching job for the Miami Dolphins. However, Flynn shortly thereafter left Miami without a contract.
Flynn’s second stop was Seattle, where the Seahawks signed him to a three-year $19.5 million dollar contract, with $10 million guaranteed. The buzz around the league was that Flynn would be the Seahawks starting Quarterback.
That is… until the third round of the 2012 NFL Draft, when the Seahawks acquired Russell Wilson (the short, yet productive quarterback out of Wisconsin.) This was a shocking choice because it was WIDELY believed that Flynn would start the 2012 season and Tarvaris Jackson would be the primary backup. (However, not totally shocking, when compared to the Seahawks taking Bruce Irving in the middle of the first round, but still a shock in its own rite)
Tarvaris Jackson was signed the year before in free agency to try and fill the void left by Matt Hasselbeck. It’s interesting to note that Tarvaris Jackson was in a similar situation in Minnesota, when he was anticipated to be the starting QB once Daunte Culpepper left, until the Vikings found a way to lure Brett Favre as starting QB and move Tarvaris as backup.
So far in camp, Pete Carroll has openly announced that it was a three-man-race to earn the starting job for the Seahawk’s 2012 season. Most believe, as I do, that Matt Flynn will win the job. Although Pete Carroll is leading us to believe that this race may last until early September. The Seahawks would be smart to play up all three until the last minute, by then if another team has a starter go out, they can use the odd man out as trade bait. Matt Flynn has been appointed the starter for the first preseason game so we will see how he holds up, and if he can hold up to the pressure of two hungry quarterbacks waiting on the sidelines.
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