For the first time since Aaron Rodgers solidified himself as the Packers' franchise quarterback, there are some legitimate questions regarding how much the team should invest in the position going forward. Rodgers' play last year shouldn't concern anyone, but the performance of his backups during the latter half of the season leaves the door open for change.
Part of that uncertainty centers around the contract status of Matt Flynn. After being jettisoned by the Raiders and Bills midway through the 2013 season, Flynn found little interest until a Packers team made desperate by Rodgers' fractured collarbone signed him off the street to a prorated one year deal on November 11.
Flynn performed capably but unspectacularly in five games, helping to earn Green Bay two needed wins late in the season. His knowledge of the offense remains top notch, and he still garners respect from his teammates. However, he's experienced trouble with his throwing arm and can't put the zip on his passes he once did. It's been rumored that doctors have told him that elbow surgery might be in his future. That said, if the Packers can re-sign Flynn for around the veteran minimum, it's hard to see Flynn leaving town.
Scott Tolzien will be in Green Bay for training camp regardless. The former Badger is currently the only backup quarterback under contract for next season. Tolzien took a short turn as the Packers' starting quarterback following Seneca Wallace's groin injury. During that stint, Green Bay got to see two sides of their young quarterback. Early on Tolzien showed excellent arm strength and willingness to go down field, in one game hitting on every pass of more than 20 yards. However, Tolzien failed to turn that success into points, instead throwing multiple picks. In his final start, Tolzien looked tentative. While he avoided the costly interceptions, Tolzien wasn't able to move the offense down the field.
While Tolzien hasn't played since late November, head coach Mike McCarthy remains steadfast in his support of the young quarterback. He'll be given a chance this offseason to unseat Matt Flynn (who seems a logical choice to re-sign for a minimum contract) for the top backup job.
Even if Flynn and Tolzien return, don't expect the Packers to sit idle at the position. The 2014 draft class features a considerable amount of well-regarded quarterback prospects. Given that Ted Thompson hasn't drafted a quarterback since B.J. Coleman in 2012, this could be the year he takes another shot at a late round signal caller. That's probably about all the investment the team will do at the position, however. There are just too many other problem areas for the Packers to spend significant resources at this position.
Need Rating (1-10): 2
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