Seattle Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll has preached "competition" since arriving in the Pacific Northwest, so it's not surprising that free agent Matt Flynn will have to earn the starting quarterback job in an open competition with last year's starter, Tarvaris Jackson, Eric Williams of the Tacoma News Tribune reports.
"This is going to bring out the best in these guys and that’s why competition is the thing around here," Carroll said. "It does force you to bring your best. The better that T-Jack plays, the better Matt has to play, and vice versa. We’re going to get a great end result out of this one way or the other and we’ll see what happens."
Seattle signed Jackson to a two-year, $8 million contract after last year's lockout. Jackson played through a painful pectoral injury to start 14 of 15 games and pass for 3,091 yards with 14 touchdowns and 13 interceptions, but he was often indecisive and took too many sacks (42 sacks, five lost fumbles) to cement the starting role for the long-term.
Jackson's experience in Darrell Bevell's system and body of work means he'll take the snaps with the first-team.
"T-Jack is taking the first snap right now," Carroll said. "That’s what he does everyday out here. He’s already earned that out here. But from that point, the competition is on. And those guys are well informed about that."
Flynn, a seventh round pick out of LSU by the Green Bay Packers in 2008, has been the No. 2 quarterback behind Aaron Rodgers, starting a pair of games over the last two seasons when Rodgers was either injured or resting for the playoffs when the Packers had nothing on the line. Flynn received a three-year, $19.5 million contract extension, but will earn just $500,000 more this season than Jackson will (a portion of Flynn's signing bonus was deferred to 2013) and counts $1.15 million less on the cap than Jackson will.
Flynn knows that just because he got the money -- Flynn's $10 million in guaranteed money is more than the total value of Jackson's contract -- doesn't mean he won't have to earn the job.
"I know that everything I do matters," Flynn said. "In Green Bay I
kind of had the luxury of kind of sitting back and learning, and being
able to take my time in the progression of becoming a better
"But I come in here, and now I get to compete and get the opportunity. And that’s what I came here for, and that’s what I’m excited about."