Seahawks have agreed to a contract with Matt Flynn
Flynn visited Seattle on Friday before going to Miami to visit the Dolphins.
The Seahawks did not disclose terms, only that it was a multi-year deal. It is a three-year contract, according to ESPN, that could be worth a total of $26 million with $10 million guaranteed.
Filed to ESPN: Matt Flynn has agreed to terms with Seattle on a 3-yr contract worth up to $26M w/$10M guaranteed.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) March 18, 2012
Flynn becomes the third quarterback the Seahawks have acquired under coach Pete Carroll and general manager John Schneider. It's also clearly the largest investment they have made in a quarterback as Tarvaris Jackson and Charlie Whitehurst were signed to two-year contracts.
What this means in terms of the immediate depth chart at quarterback is obviously the question. Is Flynn brought aboard as the starter or is he brought aboard with the idea he can compete to become the starter? It's an important difference, and one that you can't tell just by looking at the broad sketch of the contract.
Because while the total is $26 million, the so-called guaranteed portion -- the chunk the player is assured of earning -- is not significantly more than the $8 million commitments Seattle made to Jackson and Whitehurst.
That's not to say they're the same. They're not. Flynn is obviously someone who came in with more credentials than Whitehurst. Not that that's saying much because Whitehurst was a third-string quarterback who had not attempted a regular-season pass. But Flynn has played well in the time he has been on the field.
Not only that, but he has never lost a starting job as Jackson had in Minnesota.
Update: Coach Pete Carroll released a statement through the team regarding the acquisition:
"We are really excited to bring Matt in here to compete with Tarvaris."
-- Pete Carroll, Seahawks coach
Now before anyone reads to much into that, let's remember the emphasis Carroll puts upon competition, and not just because he'll use that word an average of 3.6 times per interview. He said Charlie Whitehurst would compete with Matt Hasselbeck when Whitehurst was acquired in 2010, and throughout offseason minicamps and into training camp, Hasselbeck was the clear-cut starter.
The exception was last year when Jackson was designated the starter ahead of Whitehurst when training camp opened, but those were also exceptional circumstances. The lockout had robbed teams of the offseason, and while Jackson was the new quarterback, he also had extensive experience with Darrell Bevell's offense. Carroll was clear that making Jackson the starter gave Seattle the best chance to get off to a good start because of his familiarity with the offense.
All that's a long way of saying that don't think a statement that Flynn will "compete" with Jackson means the Seahawks don't expect Flynn to start.
The fact that the two sides came to an agreement means a great deal. It means the Seahawks believe they improved their team by signing Flynn to a larger deal than the one Jackson has. It also means Flynn saw Seattle as good next step in his career.