GREEN BAY, WI - JANUARY 01: Matt Flynn #10 of the Green Bay Packers smiles as time runs out of a game against the Detroit Lions at Lambeau Field on January 1, 2012 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. The Packers defeated the Lions 45-41. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
When I was writing during the NFL lockout, I didn't expect Matt Flynn to return to the Green Bay Packers. He was set to become a free agent after the 2011 season, and last summer looked like the time to trade him. He had a very good game in December 2010 against the Patriots, and it seemed likely that some team would give him a chance to start. For whatever reason (the Packers wanted to retain a quality backup, or maybe there was no team willing to surrender a good draft pick) he returned this season.
Flynn nominated for Air NFL Player of the Week. Vince Verhei wrote for ESPN (insider subscription required) about Flynn's big game. Not only was it one of the best games of the year for any quarterback, and better than any performance by Aaron Rodgers, it was one of the best games over the past two decades. His conclusion was that mediocre quarterbacks never have games that good.
It would seem likely that they could use a franchise tag and then trade Flynn for a high draft pick. Or a good package of draft picks. Kevin Seifert pointed out the risks, and maybe the team will have to settle for a compensatory draft pick. But if any GM is adept at navigating the trade waters, it's Ted Thompson. He'll get as much for Flynn as he can get. There has been some talk about re-signing him as the backup, but that seems unrealistic.
Not every team is going to be in the market for a quarterback, but only one team will be able to draft Andrew Luck. There are still several teams that could really use an upgrade, and Flynn should be able to play in any system. They may prefer to trade him to the AFC, and that should be possible.
In the meantime, I'm sure he's focused on the task at hand: getting prepared for another Super Bowl run. And I'm glad the Packers have him.