The question today is apparently not whether the Dolphins will try to sign Matt Flynn. It seems if the team gets a chance to sign the Green Bay free agent backup quarterback, that is exactly what will happen.
No, the question I believe more important is not whether the Dolphins will try to sign Flynn but how they'll try to sign Flynn. It's a completely different issue and definitely as important an issue.
Flynn, according to a reliable source, will be in town sometime late tonight. He'll be here, assuming he doesn't get blown away by the Seattle Seahawks and simply jumps at the opportunity. But once he arrives, then what?
What to do with Flynn?
Do the Dolphins commit to Flynn as their starter or do they commit to him as, ahem, a quarterback who will come to camp and compete with Matt Moore for the starting job. In other words, do the Dolphins commit starting quarterback money or do they commit the kind of money a player who has a chance to start but isn't certain of that typically gets?
If the Dolphins are committing to Flynn as their starter, they may have to spend between $7-$9 million per season. The deal would probably extend past two years and there would be a chunky bag of guaranteed money included.
The lesser commitment is obviously cheaper -- probably $4-$5 million per year with incentive clauses that would hike the deal's worth if Flynn wins the starting job, thus deserving more money. This kind of deal protects the team if he fails.
Flynn is worth one but definitely not the other. He is a value if signing a deal that protects the team in case he's more A.J. Feeley than Drew Brees. He still gets paid if he becomes a star. But he has to earn his money rather than getting it the minute he walks in the locker room.
Makes sense, right?
The problem is Flynn wants to maximize his earning. He will want the biggest deal he can get, certainly his agent will want that. And because he's got two quarterback-hungry teams talking to him, he might be able to leverage one versus the other to get what he wants.
(Personally, I don't see the Seahawks letting themselves be held up. They paid Travaris Jackson a two-year deal worth $8 million last season. I assume if they offer Flynn, it'll be a similar deal and ask him to fight for the starting job. I say this because you must remember Flynn was not Seattle's top QB choice this offseason. They actually scheduled Chad Henne to come to town before Flynn. Henne never made it because he signed with Jacksonville.)
Well, the Dolphins can similarly make the case that Flynn is not their top choice. At least I hope they make that case. Everyone knows they wanted Peyton Manning. And I assume they aren't going to use the money on Flynn that they would have used on Manning.
At least I hope not because that's just dumb.
I guess what I'm asking is for the Dolphins to hold their desperation in check. Getting Flynn simply isn't like getting Manning. We don't even know if he's any good.
With Flynn it's not just about getting him to come. As a relatively unproven player, he has to come at the right price -- for the team.
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