Seattle Seahawks

Matt Flynn On Picking Seattle Over Miami: “I Just Felt Like It Was A Better Situation For Me”

Dec 27, 2015; New Orleans, LA, USA; New Orleans Saints quarterback Matt Flynn (3) warms up before their game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. Mandatory Credit: Chuck Cook-USA TODAY Sports

The Seattle Seahawks have a shiny new franchise quarterback. Matt Flynn — who has just two career NFL starts but was the most heavily hyped free-agent offensive player not named Peyton — is tasked with leading the Seahawks into the future after the 26-year-old signed a three-year, $26-million deal over the weekend.

Matt Flynn joined Kevin Calabro and Jim Moore on 710 ESPN in Seattle to talk about his new contract with the Seahawks, address whether he’s been guaranteed a starting role, elaborate on why he chose Seattle over Miami and deliver a self-assessment of his assets. The four-year veteran also spoke about what Aaron Rodgers did for his career, touched on his monster performance against Detroit to cap the season and explained why he decided to throw passes for Seahawks brass over the weekend.

On if he has been promised the starting job:

“No, not at all. He promised me that there was gonna be a good competition and I think one thing I respect about him is that he preaches competition and I think it brings the best out of everybody. But in my visit up there I got to know the coaches — I didn’t really know any of them. I knew John Schneider the GM, but I didn’t really know anybody else. Got to know them, felt really comfortable, loved the vibe over there. It feels like a really great family environment. And after doing some soul searching after I went to Miami, it just kind of felt like it was the best fit for me. I have a chance to go up there and be successful, and a great place so I’m really excited to be a Seahawk.”

On why he chose Seattle over Miami, despite the fact that his former position coach, Joe Philbin, now coaches the Dolphins:

“I am close with Joe, I think a lot of him. I think he’s gonna do a great job in Miami. I think he’s gonna be a really successful head coach in the league. So when it came down to it, I just felt like it was a better situation for me — I felt it’s a program that’s really on the rise, doing the right thing, is being led by the right type of people. And you look at it, I think it’s the second youngest team in the NFL, and so there’s a lot of talent everywhere and I think it’s a team that in the very near future has a chance to be special.”

On the expectation, jokingly, that he’ll be expected to throw for 400 yards a game in Seattle:

“I’m not gonna make any promises like that, but I’ve never been a stat guy, I’ve never been a guy that really cared about how many touchdowns or yards. There’s only one stat I care about and that’s winning. And that’s the one thing that I take very seriously and passionately, is to win. And I don’t care if I have to throw for 100 yards or 400 yards — it doesn’t really matter to me as long as I put the people around me in the right position to win.”

On his assets and his reputation as a thinking man’s quarterback:

“Well I feel like I know the game well. I feel like I understand offenses, I understand what defenses are trying to do. And to be a quarterback in the NFL, you have to be smart. You have to be able to make the right decisions very quickly. And you gotta be able to take care of the ball. I think if you turn the ball over, that’s something that really gets a team killed and really is a downfall of quarterbacks. So I’m a guy that tries to be smart and I don’t try to do everything myself. I’m a guys that’s gonna try to get it in the hands of the guys around me, and get the offense in the right play according to what look I see. So it’s something that I spend a lot of time studying, and that’s something that I pride myself on.”

On Aaron Rodgers saying that there was something different about him in 2011:

“That is the ultimate compliment, coming from a guy like him. I think each year I just got more comfortable with the game speed of the NFL, the offense, seeing defenses quicker. And I learned a lot of that from Aaron. I wouldn’t be in the spot I am today without being behind Aaron and learning a lot from him. And he’s made me a better player mentally and physically and it’s just something that, over four years in Green Bay, I feel like I progressed each year, and it’s something that I hope to carry over to Seattle, and just keep getting better and just try to make this team a better team.”

On if a six-touchdown performance in the season finale against Detroit gave him a sense that he was going to become a hot commodity:

“I dunno, I knew before that game, I knew all along that my contract was up in Green Bay. But I didn’t really know what was going to happen — that was definitely a very fun afternoon that last game I played in, and it’s one of those that you kind of take a look at after the game’s over and you’re like, ‘What in the world just happened?’ And I needed to pinch myself, ‘What happened?’ But it just helped give me confidence, I guess, in my game. You know I’ve always been a confident player, even when I backed up for a couple years in college, the last four years that I’ve been backing up Aaron, I’ve always been a confident guy, always been a guy that felt like he could go in and have success. But that just kind of helped solidify it, when you get to actually go out there, when you’re taking live bullets. So it helped me a lot and my goal ever since I’ve been in college was to be an NFL starter and I’m gonna have an opportunity to go and compete for that and try to make a team a championship team.”

On if he followed the frenzy regarding Peyton Manning:

“Yup, I was definitely following along with it. It’s just one of those things where you’ve gotta sit back and see what happens. There’s nothing you can do about it at that point, just gotta kinda see what happens, see where he goes.”

On why he threw passes at the team facility on the day he signed:

“I had already been meeting with (Darrell) Bevell and some of the other offensive coaches, watching some film with them. And we went to lunch and John Schneider asked me if I wouldn’t mind throwing, because none of the coaches up there really knew me. Schneider was the only person that knew me, obviously from Green Bay. So no one had ever seen me play live, only thing they knew was the limited film I had. So he just asked, ‘Hey, the guys would kinda like to see you throw. Would you mind doing it?’ And I didn’t mind at all. I said, ‘Sure, let’s do it. I don’t have anything to hide, but let’s go do it.’ So I went out there and threw and it was real relaxed, it wasn’t anything extremely formal. We went out there and just threw some balls, did some dropbacks and that was about it. It wasn’t anything too formal, too serious. It was pretty chill and pretty relaxed.”

On if he’s talked to Tarvaris Jackson:

“I haven’t talked to him. I know he’s a very good guy, I know he’s a great guy and I know he played well last year. And it’s gonna be one of those things where hopefully we can come in and compete and push each other, make each other better, just because the more that we push each other the better the team’s gonna be. And I look forward to that, I look forward to working with him and I look forward to getting to know him. So it’s gonna be fun and I’m sure I’m gonna be talking to him or meeting him here pretty soon.”

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