Last night, Jason La Canfora of CBS wrote that the Jaguars, Raiders, and Bills all remain “in the mix” for Seattle backup QB Matt Flynn. Just when most 12s were getting used to the idea that Flynn was going to be back in 2013, things are heating up on the trade front again.
I believe that the Seahawks will trade Flynn, and I’m willing to bet they takes less in compensation than anyone expects in order to get a deal done too. This isn’t about talent. It’s about cap space.
Trading Flynn now saves the Seahawks $3.25 million in cap space in 2013, and another $2 million in cap space in 2014 . (If he’s not traded now, he’ll certainly be cut before free agency a year from now, resulting in $2 million of dead money at that time.) That’s $5.25 million in total cap space that can be used to re-sign one of the team’s young stars.
That $5.25 million in cap space is likely what allows this team to keep Kam Chancellor. The team already has huge pay days coming for Russell Wilson, Richard Sherman, and Earl Thomas. They have a plan for that. A little extra cap space now will allow the team to get Kam’s deal done, as well.
Ultimately it’s about priorities. Is keeping Flynn as an insurance policy for a Wilson injury in 2013 worth losing Kam Chancellor in free agency? In my opinion, he’s not. Keeping a young member of this team’s defensive core is simply more valuable than a backup QB.
It should also noted that cutting Flynn doesn’t work in this case. He still has guaranteed money on his contract, and so cutting him does not provide the cap relief that trading him does.
Putting all that together means that the cap space alone would be a sufficient return for Flynn. Any draft pick would just be icing on the cake. Expect a trade to get done at some point before the draft.