RENTON – Besides getting a big contract, career backup Matt Flynn’s aspirations of netting a starting quarterback job didn’t exactly go according to plan.
When the fifth-year pro signed a three-year, $19.5 million deal to join the Seattle Seahawks in March, Flynn fully expected to enter the regular season as the team’s starter, although coach Pete Carroll told him the job would have to be earned.
Fast forward to six months after he signed, and Flynn finds himself in the same position he was in Green Bay: backup quarterback.
“I’m ready to go whenever I need to go,” Flynn said Thursday as the Seahawks prepared to play his former team. “That’s how I’m going to look at it. I still have confidence, and I think I can get the job done if I needed to.”
Although understandably disappointed and frustrated, Flynn has handled the situation well, helping his new team prepare for his old one by mimicking close friend Aaron Rodgers during practice.
“I’ve been running that offense for four years,” Flynn said with a grin. “So I guess if anybody can imitate him, I’m going to have a good chance of trying.”
Count former teammate Rodgers among those who are surprised Flynn will be watching from the sideline on Monday night. The reigning league MVP said the two remain close friends and talk weekly.
“It hasn’t gone the way that he would’ve wanted so far,” Rodgers said, “but he’s a competitor, and hopefully he’s going to get an opportunity at some point, either there or somewhere else.
Green Bay coach Mike McCarthy, who offered a good recommendation on Flynn to former Packers personnel man and current Seahawks general manager John Schneider, also said he expected Flynn to win the job.
“When Matt decided to sign with Seattle, I definitely felt from my experience with Matt that we’d be playing against him come Week 3,” McCarthy said. “There’s no question about that.
“Also, on the other side of it, when Seattle selected Russell Wilson, we also recognized that they drafted a fine young quarterback. So however it’s worked out, the way we’re approaching it from Green Bay is that they (the Seahawks) have two fine young quarterbacks, and Russell is the young man that we’re prepared for.”
Flynn said the elbow injury he suffered during the preseason that forced him to miss the third exhibition game at Kansas City did not affect his ability to earn the starting job.
“I don’t think so,” Flynn said. “(The injury has) just been more annoying than anything. But I don’t think that played a part in it.”
Seattle offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell said he has been pleased with how Flynn has responded to the situation.
“Initially, it was a shock to him,” Bevell said. “He took it like any quarterback you would hope took it. He wasn’t happy about it. It wasn’t how he expected it to go, or how he saw it in his mind, so he wasn’t happy.
“But once he moved on from that, I think he’s been great for Russ (rookie starter Russell Wilson). … He’s helping out any way he can from the sideline.”
TATE PLANS TO APPEAL
Seahawks receiver Golden Tate said he plans to appeal the $21,000 fine he received for what the league deemed to be an illegal hit on a defenseless player when Tate knocked down Dallas linebacker Sean Lee on a peel-back block Sunday.
“Hopefully they give me some insight on what I can do to make it legal, and go from there,” Tate said. “We’re a very physical team. That’s kind of our style of play, so I’m definitely going to continue to be physical, but within the rules.”
Carroll said he did not necessarily agree with the fine but understands why the league continues to crack down on collisions that involve helmet-to-helmet contact.
NFL rules also prohibit using the top or “hairline” parts of the helmet to hit an opposing player anywhere.
The NFL officiating department reviews every play of every game each week. Any play that needs reviewing for possible discipline – whether penalized or not – is referred to the league’s football operations department, which then decides whether to discipline a player for an on-field violation.
The fine for a first-time offender for an illegal hit on a defenseless player this season is $21,000.
Safety Earl Thomas said new Seahawks cornerback Danny Gorrer is a guy he looked up to while playing football in East Texas and that the two remain good friends. Thomas grew up in Orange, Texas, a 15-minute drive from Gorrer’s hometown of Port Arthur. Thomas said Gorrer ran a 40-yard dash in a 4.38 seconds during his workout on Monday. “He didn’t stretch that much or anything, and he still ran about a 4.37 or 4.38,” Thomas said. “So that’s one thing you can’t coach. And I feel like growing up where we come from, our mentality is different from a lot of people. So just adding that mentality to the team, he’s very aggressive and he’s always trying to get to the ball.” … Cornerback Byron Maxwell (hamstring) did not practice Thursday. Tight end Zach Miller (foot), running back Marshawn Lynch (back) and receiver Doug Baldwin (shoulder) were limited participants. Receiver Charly Martin (chest) and offensive tackle Russell Okung (knee) were full participants. … For Green Bay, tight end Tom Crabtree (shoulder), receiver Greg Jennings (groin) and linebacker Jamari Lattimore (ankle) did not participate. Receiver Randall Cobb (hamstring), cornerback Davon House (shoulder), offensive guard Josh Sitton (knee), running back James Starks (toe) and defensive end C.J. Wilson (groin) were limited participants. Linebacker Terrell Manning (concussion) and linebacker Nick Perry (wrist) were full firstname.lastname@example.org blog.thenewstribune.com/seahawks