Over the past few months, I have been of the opinion that the Green Bay Packers should be mandated to keep three quarterbacks on the 53-man roster.
My argument was to simply look at last season; the Packers have to learn their lesson from what took place and the near-disaster that occurred. The Packers nearly fell into the abyss of NFL teams with a losing record. As it was, they were mediocre at best and it all stemmed from the fact that Aaron Rodgers was lost for half of the season and they weren’t prepared to replace him.
The results were simply ugly. We all understand that fact.
Part of the reason the Packers survived and even won the bewildering NFC North Division last season was because Matt Flynn helped save the day. For that, we were very thankful.
But 2014 is a new season.
Tonight we will all be watching both Flynn and Scott Tolzien as they compete to not only win a preseason football game, but they will also be competing for the backup quarterback position.
In my mind, the race is over even before it continues tonight.
The Packers must cut Flynn and keep Tolzien.
Crazy am I, you ask?
A week or two ago, I would have thought the same.
We have all seen what Flynn has done in the preseason competition to date … basically nothing.
Here are the stats of Tolzien and Flynn this preseason:
• Tolzien – 26-of-38 for 338 yards (completing 68.4 percent), 8.9 yards per pass, no turnovers and a passer rating of 104.9.
• Flynn – 11-of-23 for 130 yards (completing 47 percent), 1 interception and a passer rating of 61.9.
The statistics speak for themselves, but even more important is the fact that the Packers need the roster spot elsewhere.
Look around the field. Do the Packers want to say goodbye to promising players like Jayrone Elliott, Mike Pennel or Jumal Rolle to keep an extra quarterback who most likely won’t play a single snap in 2014?
I would say no.
If the Packers cut Flynn and they run into a situation like last year, they could give Flynn a call and bring him back in a heartbeat. How likely is it that some other team will pick him up? Not very, considering that it was the Packers who pulled him off the street last year when they were desperate.
The risk of not being able to bring Flynn back is worth taking for the Packers for the simple reason that the rewards they will garner down the road by keeping a roster spot open for a player who will actually contribute will pay benefits far greater than having three quarterbacks on the team.
Mike McCarthy said it best yesterday:
“It’s like any position, Matt and Scott aren’t just competing against each other. This goes back to the way we’ve always picked a team. You have to keep your best players. They’re really competing against the other positions, and that’s really what it will come down to.”
So as we watch Flynn and Tolzien on the field tonight, my guess is that we might be watching #10 for the last time in a Packers uniform, barring any unforeseen circumstances.
Yes, the Packers should cut Matt Flynn and move on with Scott Tolzien as the backup. It will be the right thing to do for the benefit of the entire team.