With football set to return to Seattle in just about 5 hours, all eyes will be QBs Matt Flynn and Russell Wilson. Fans will try and look at the results from these two players to decide on who should be playing on Sundays once the game count. Unfortunately, this is a fool’s errand.
Flynn is likely to struggle. WRs Rice, Baldwin, Owens, Lockette and RB Marshawn Lynch are all not expected to play. Flynn will be going up against the Titans defensive starters with none of his weapons.
Wilson, on the other hand, really should look great. He will be playing against guys who most likely will be unemployed next month, and trying to catch on with the USFL this spring.
This is simply not an apples-to-apples comparison. The drop off in talent from the starters to those that play in the 2nd half is much more than people think.
You only have to think back to last year if you want proof of what I’m saying. Charlie Whitehurst repeatedly outplayed Tarvaris Jackson in the preseason, but Jackson was playing agaisnt starters while Whitehurst never played against the opponent’s first team. I think we can all agree now that Whitehurst was by-far the inferior player once the regular season games were played.
I’m not trying to take anything away from Wlson here. Unlike Whitehurst, I think Wilson has real talent and will be a decent player. I’m just saying that the stats from this one game wont mean what some fans want it to mean.
The converse of the situation I referred too above also applies. If Flynn can impress given the situation, then he’s going to be good this year for the Seahawks. If Wilson struggles, then it’s proof that he’s far from ready and the Seahawks will want to keep Jackson around to backup Flynn. I just find it unlikely that either of those things will happen.
Flynn isn’t the type of player at this point in his career where he can carry an offense in which Phil Bates will get significant playing time with the 1st stringers. Wilson is also too talented to get shown up by a bunch of guys who are just trying to make the practice squad.