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Raiders start over with Matt Flynn
Team acquires QB from Seattle in exchange for draft picks, prepares to deal Palmer

  • In this Aug. 18, 2012, file photo, Seattle Seahawks quarterback Matt Flynn looks to pass the ball against the Broncos in a preseason game in Denver. The Oakland Raiders have traded for Flynn in the team's latest change at the game's most important position. (Joe Mahoney / Associated Press)

The Raiders' decision to trade for Seattle quarterback Matt Flynn and replace Carson Palmer is similar to a move made in 1999 when the club opted to part ways with Jeff George in favor of free agent Rich Gannon.

Like Palmer, George was a gifted passer whose statistical accomplishments were more impressive than his won-lost record.

Like Gannon, Flynn has bided his time primarily as a backup, lauded for his leadership skills and preparation.

The Raiders completed a deal Monday that brings Flynn from Seattle for a fifth-round pick in 2014 and conditional pick in 2015. The other shoe — dealing Palmer to Arizona — is expected to bring a mid- to late-round pick or picks.

The comparison between Flynn and Gannon — in terms of makeup and approach to the game — was publicly hailed by Green Bay Packers coach Mike McCarthy, under whom both quarterbacks worked. McCarthy was Gannon's position coach with the Kansas City Chiefs, and more recently head coach of the Packers, with whom Flynn spent the first four years of his career after being drafted in the seventh round out of LSU.

Gannon, who does some work on Packers preseason telecasts, also became a big fan of Flynn in Green Bay.

“I've talked to Mike a good deal about this guy,” Gannon said. “I just know he's ready to go. I just think this guy is going to be a good player. I really do.”

Gannon recalled a presentation he made to the Green Bay quarterbacks.

“Matt was very good. He asked good questions. He was a good note-taker. He was into it,” Gannon said.

Before Flynn signed with the Seahawks as a free agent last offseason, Gannon told one Ohio newspaper that the Cleveland Browns ought to consider bringing him aboard.

Flynn, 27, has some of the same limitations Gannon had in terms of arm strength. At LSU, he waited four years behind Marcus Randall and Ja-Marcus Russell before earning the job as a fifth-year senior and leading the Tigers to the national championship following the 2007 season.

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