Seahawks Insider

Report: Hawks nearly doubled Miami’s offer to Flynn

Post by Eric Williams on March 30, 2012 at 4:38 pm with 38 Comments »
March 30, 2012 4:42 pm

With the Seattle Seahawks signing of free agent quarterback Matt Flynn now nearly two weeks in the rear view mirror, more details surrounding the courting of the Green Bay reserve quarterback are starting to emerge.

One of the reasons given for Flynn signing in Seattle was the Dolphins offering him what was perceived as a low-ball offer.

Jeff Darlington of the NFL Network confirms those suspicions in an article on Miami general manager Jeff Ireland. Darlington reports that according to a source, the Dolphins offered Flynn a contract worth $4 million a year, while the Seahawks sweetened the pot considerably, nearly doubling that offer with a three-year, $26 million maximum deal.

Darlington: Ireland wouldn’t disclose details of those negotiations, but a Dolphins source said the team only was willing to offer Flynn nearly $4 million per year because they weren’t convinced he was a franchise quarterback. Seattle ended up paying him more than double at nearly $8 million per year on a three-year deal.”

Now, only $10 million of Flynn’s contract is guaranteed. He will receive $8 million in the first year of the deal, including a $6 million signing bonus and $2 million in base salary in 2012. Basically, Flynn can earn $15.5 million in two years if he starts in 2012, which is likely.

While many around the league feel that Miami missed out on signing Flynn, it’s interesting to note that even with former Green Bay offensive coordinator Joe Philbin now the head coach, the Dolphins were not willing to pay Flynn the going rate for a starting quarterback in the NFL.

One reason for that could be the production of Matt Moore in the second half of 2011 for the Dolphins. Moore finished 6-6 as a starter, throwing 16 touchdowns and just nine interceptions and finishing with a 87.1 passer rating.

Moore is in the final year of a deal that will pay him $2.5 million in 2012.

The other issue is time. The Dolphins are rebuilding, so Philbin can’t afford to be wrong at the quarterback spot this early in his tenure. Philbin has time to find his franchise quarterback of the future, while Pete Carroll is in his third season in Seattle and looking to make a deep playoff run in 2012.

NFL free agency
Leave a comment Comments → 38
  1. Thank you Miami. No buyers remorse here. No wasted picks and no wasted time!

  2. There’s a reason the Dolphins have sucked for the better part of the last decade.

    They have swung and missed on good coaching candidates the last few years and now settle for a coordinator that really wasn’t a coordinator (McCarty called the offensive shots – like Homgren with Haskell as his helper).

    Jeff Ireland is a joke and everybody knows it.

    Maybe their philosphy is that since they won no Super Bowls with a good/great QB, Dan Marino (not that Flynn is a Marino), that they can see how incompetent they can be at the position and see where that gets them (maybe they need more than 10 years to figure it out).

    Or maybe Mike Sherman really likes Tannenhill and they have determined that he’s going to be their man? With Ireland, that can’t be possible, as it might be a good idea and there’s no way fools can have good ideas.

    I’m glad I’m not a Dolphins fan.

  3. Galena – Exactly! No buyers remorse here either!

    They wanted Manning but Manning didn’t want them. The next best thing was Flynn and they got him. The status quo wasn’t good enough and they didn’t sit on their hands and did the right thing – they got their man!

  4. To pour salt in the wound, Miami will probably miss out on Tannehill too. Holmgren will not pass up the chance to draft what he perceives to be a big time QB. Tannehill goes to the Browns.

  5. solo8232 says:

    I have watched Matt Flynn play football and conduct himself as a professional since his college days at LSU. He had to play behind one of the greatest disappointments the NFL has ever seen: Jamarcus Russell. Matt did so quietly and with dignity, learning the LSU system as well as the defenses around the SEC, arguably the toughest NCAA Division 1 conference in the country.

    When Matt got his opportunity he delivered both at LSU and at Green Bay. Seattle, you can count on this young man to give you everything he has to offer the Sea Hawks. I have every confidence that the Sea Hawk fans will find him to be the real deal and someone who will lead your team to bigger and better things!!

  6. A lot of other QB needy teams also passed on Flynn at this “bargain rate.”

    Matt Moore and Flynn are pretty similar type of QBs so it makes sense from the Dolphins point of view.

    I had pegged the Dolphins to be like the Redskins – overpaying for mediocre talent but it looks like they are smarter than that.

  7. Well they are both named Matt.

  8. The Dolphins and “smarter than that” don’t belong in the same sentence if their on-field performance is any indicator of “success” or being “smart” for more than a decade.

  9. GeorgiaHawk says:

    This is Matt Flynns job to lose! He may not be the best thing since the poor man’s Joe Montana, (David Krieg), however he is still so much better than Jackson!

  10. GeorgiaHawk says:

    We have one more year of Jackson and then we won’t have to waste millions of dollars anymore on a less then average qb!

    I think we will find our future backup qb in the draft.

    Name one other NFL team that would have signed Jackson for 4- mill! Just one!

  11. Kingpear says:

    After today’s pro days, looks like PC was out for Osweiler.

    That would not surprise me, as they just made an investment in Flynn. Osweiler probably needs a few years to get up to speed, and refine his over-the-top delivery.

    Can probably get him in the late second, early third.
    I just want them to stay away from Weeden

  12. DreadHawks says:

    He who laughs last,laughs best! I like the Flynn signing and I think it’s gonna work out! Laugh all the way to the Super Bowl.

  13. Palerydr says:

    As Flynn hasn’t played a down yet as our starter I’m gonna hold off on putting him in the Pro Bowl. Even if other teams valued him less I’m still happy with the contract he signed it’s certainly not one that will hamstring the franchise for years. The deal he signed will also IMO motivate Flynn to perform so that when year 3 comes up he has the leverage to tear up and redo the contract, instead signing one that befits an upper level starting QB in the NFL. Or we drop him and hopefully the QB we draft/sign this year or next pans out as the “Guy who tilts the room”

  14. FleaFlicker says:

    I’d go with the “Matt Moore still has a shot” school-of-thought. He’s not a bad QB. Who knows, with a better supporting cast, he might turn out to be half-way decent.

    I think one of the teams that did some tremendous FA work is the Bucs. They added some real talent on the O-line and at WR.

    If we expect Flynn to be a legitimate starting QB, I like the philosophy of paying him accordingly. No need to have some Alex Smith baby-mama-drama if we do finally find our guy. Make Flynn feel welcome and place some reasonable expectations on him to make good on his end of the contract.

    I’d agree with Sando, who gives us a B+ for free agency:

  15. FleaFlicker says:

    And while I’m on here…Eric, your thoughts on maybe trying to poach Calais Campbell from the Cards? 6’8″, 300 lb., 25 year old DE with eight sacks last year. Everybody’s banging the drum for more D-line.

    He is franchised, so it would be like $11 million a year. But man, that would be awesome to leg sweep a division team.

  16. wabubba67 says:

    Flea–If he’s franchised, it would take a huge contract AND working out a trade with the Cardinals. Pass.

  17. Kingpear says:


    Don’t have to work out a trade, but I agree on the large contract.

    The bigger problem with non-exclusive contract is the forfeit of two 1st round picks…OUCH!

    Of course, if you were saying to negotiate a trade sans the two picks, you are right.


  18. Southendzone says:

    This doesn’t change anything. Hawks didn’t significantly overpay for Flynn. It was a calculated gamble and I’m still 100% behind it. So what if we could have gotten away with an offer that was less? We’re still OK on cap space and this deal will not cripple us even if Flynn is a total failure which I don’t expect.

    On another subject, I don’t think Cleveland OR Miami will take Tannehill, that’s my wild draft prediction.

  19. freedom_X says:

    It’s pretty clear Matt Flynn wasn’t rated as a “must-have” QB by anybody in the NFL. I’m confident Seattle is getting a reasonable value in Flynn, but obviously he wasn’t nearly as hot a ticket as many people thought he would be, especially 2 months ago.

    No getting a “franchise QB without giving up picks” here. The difference between a fan transaction and a professional one – fans don’t actually know what the market value is for a player. Pros do. (and if they don’t, they’re the dotard version of Al Davis.)

    I hope Flynn turns into a franchise QB, of course, or at least a Pro Bowl one. But it’s clear the market didn’t think he’s likely to be a franchise QB, not even close.

  20. chrisj122 says:

    I don’t know if Miamis F.O. is trying to be cheap or just straight up stupid. If they even thought for a minute that Flynn could be their franchise QB why in the world would offer such a low ball deal? I understand not offering a Kolb like deal but to offer T-Jack money is a joke.

  21. I agree with Bobbyk there is no way you can say Miami has been smart. You could say they have been a laughing stock, cheap, owner is too fascinated with making a show… those type of things.

    All IMO – For Flynn, we don’t need to determine today if he is a franchise QB or not. We don’t need to worry about his sub-starter salary being too much. All we need to worry about is, is he better than Jackson? I for one feel so much more comfortable with our chances next year, with our ability to be flexible in the draft, and just in general feel so much more hopeful for the future than I felt when Jackson was the default QB.

  22. “But it’s clear the market didn’t think he’s likely to be a franchise QB, not even close.”

    The market thought Kurt Warner was good enough for the supermarket.

    Stocking shelves was what most NFL teams thought he was good for in 1998. And even after he had won a Super Bowl, not many teams were interested in him in 2005.

  23. Anybody see this Matt Flynn preseason highlight?

    He’s definitely more elusive than TJack.

  24. I just read this Football Outsiders analysis of Flynn’s game against Detroit.

    An excerpt: “with the exception of (Scott) Mitchell, every quarterback who has ever played even one game anywhere near Flynn’s level played in Hawaii at least once in their careers. It’s only one game, but the simple fact is that mediocre quarterbacks are almost never this good.”

    Also: “Flynn is about to enter free agency, but the Packers would never be foolish enough to let him walk away for nothing. They’re sure to franchise him and trade him away for picks, just like New England did with Matt Cassel. … Given how many teams are desperate for quality passing – Seattle, Miami, and Washington, to name some of the top candidates – the Pack are bound to get more than that for Flynn. Any team that gets Flynn for a first-round pick, though, will have gotten quite a bargain.”

  25. The market didn’t even think Tom Brady was worth a 5th round pick or that Joe Montanta was worth a pick in the first two rounds! That same market thought that Tim Couch, Akili Smith and David Carr were worthy of extremely high picks in the FIRST round! And most of those idiots weren’t willing to give Drew Brees too much money when he was a “FREE” agent (those pros would rather draft a crap QB AND give up a pick or picks).

  26. I couldn’t be happier that we brought Flynn on board. The contract terms are just icing on the cake. I shudder to think how we would feel right now without him. Now it’s up to Matt and the coaching staff to make the most of a great opportunity and he seemingly has the fire and passion to give it his best at all times. That is the only expectation that I have, that he will give his BEST EFFORT day in day out for the team. Not worried one bit about that.

    I wanted Flynn more than Manning on the Seahawks. Crazy talk? Maybe but I’ve never cared for P. Manning. Flynn will make his name with us if that’s what he’s going to do.

    Draft your defense and buy your offense(skill positions anyway). Saves a lot of time.

  27. Macabrevity says:

    Flynn’s career should be inversely proportionate to Ireland’s. That guy imo is something of a woman’s hygiene product.

  28. freedom_X says:

    Breaking news: not even the Patriots knew Brady was going to be that good. Not even the Rams knew Warner was going to be that good.

    Because if they did, the Patriots would have taken Brady with their #1 pick. The Rams would have given Warner a mammoth free agent contract. Oh, and Green Bay must have been really stupid. Mike Holmgren and Steve Mariucci cut a franchise Super Bowl QB in Warner.

    They didn’t know they’d be that good, but they saw something worth a risk. And they paid a price proportional to that risk. Las Vegas is full of people who underestimate the payoff vs. risk. They’re the ones hitchking home.

    Joe Montana? It’s famous that Bill Walsh says he thought Montana was going to be a star. But why did Walsh wait to pick him until the end of the 3rd round?

    Because Walsh knew what Montana’s market value was. And by paying the right price, he could make the rest of his team better by using those other picks on other players.

    I sure hope the people think market value is irrelevant aren’t in charge of my 401K fund.

  29. Like with the housing bubble burst a few years back or when plenty of people lost money in the stock market a little over a decade ago? I’m sure no 401K plans took a hit back then either?

    Those experts are like GMs. You’re trained to get the best value for your clients (stocks) but you aren’t always going to be right. GMs are trained to draft and sign the best players for their teams, but they are always going to make mistakes when it’s all said and done. You just hope to have more hits than misses to make you successful in comparision to the others in your field.

    You pass on Tom Brady five times and it sucks. It’s like investing in the wrong stock(s) in a weird way. If everyone knew it was going to dramatically rise in price, everyone would have put money there instead of avoiding it and investing in something else and all of a sudden your retirement savings would look a whole heck of a lot better.

    Even when the stock market crashed on October 29, 1929, there were still some people who came out ahead b/c they were smart enough (Manning over Leaf) or lucky enough (Tom Brady in the 6th), depending on how you look at it. Joe Kennedy took much of his money out and beat the panic. I’d much rather have invested with his foresight (or lucky tip) than some expert back in the day where most lost everything. A guy like that ended up like Tim Ruskell, out of a job.

  30. So the 49ers wouldn’t have been better off securing Joe Montana early by taking him instead of James Owens in the second round and risked Montana not actually being there when they picked b/c Owens was that much of a difference maker with their team? I understand the market value argument, but sometimes everybody is wrong too (like nobody drafting Doug Baldwin last year, or almost everyone saying Tony Mandarich was about the greatest OL prospect they had ever seen).

  31. These instances you are citing are the rare exceptions and involve players coming out of college which is more difficult to analyze than established players who have been in the league several years.

    Vermeil believed enough in Kurt Warner after watching him for over a year to leave him as the starter after Trent Green got hurt. Joe Philbin has watched Matt Flynn for his entire pro career and wouldn’t even offer him a mid level starter salary.

  32. I’m still fine with the contract they signed with Flynn. Even if Miami did offer a lower number, ours is still not over the top – and for only 3 years. Given how things were setting up w/the draft and the top QB’s available there, I’m glad our FO didn’t just stay with the status quo at the position. I think the downside on this deal is very small, and the potential upside well worth it.

  33. I think they also did a great job signing Flynn and hope he can join the upper echelon of QBs by year 2 with the Seahawks. I don’t think he will, but I certainly hope he can do it.

    And if he can’t, then its no different than that Mega Millions Ticket I bought this week. Just discard and move on.

  34. I am thrilled with the signing of Flynn even if he never plays a snap in a regular season game. It’s allowed the Seahawks to move on with the draft and be able to be flexible… my dream scenario is that there’s a good QB available at 12 and we get to trade down and pick up an extra 2nd rounder. The $$ spent on Flynn is worth that!

  35. HeinieHunter says:

    In the Seahawks system Flynn only has to be the point guard. Don’t turn the ball over, keep the sticks moving, capitalize on oppositions defensive mistakes, and keep the defense honest (don’t let them continuously load the box against Lynch).
    No one should expect 90 yard game winning drives via the pass ala Brady or Elway. He just needs to play his role effectively for use to be successful. Our defense and running game can carry the big load.

  36. I don’t know much about Flynn, I just hope he doesn’t turn out to be another Rick Mirer or Bosworth.

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