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News

Coach Allen Talks Matt Flynn

Posted Apr 1, 2013

Head Coach Dennis Allen took questions from the media via conference call about newly acquired QB Matt Flynn.


Q: How much do you know about Matt Flynn? What are your impressions of him so far from what you do know?

Coach Allen: My impressions of him have been very good. I think this is a guy that comes from a football background. He won a national championship there at LSU. He was on a world-championship football team with the Green Bay Packers. This is a guy that understands the things it takes to win a championship. When you talk to people that have actually been in the building with Matt Flynn, they talk a lot about the type of guy he is and the type of person he is and the type of football character that this guy has.

Q: How much of this was predicated upon the fact that you think Flynn is a better option for you guys at quarterback, be it his age, salary, talent, whatever, then also the fact that Palmer was going to cost a lot more money?

Coach Allen: I think you look into all those things when you’re trying to make these types of decisions. I think we all just felt like at this point when you look at Matt Flynn, and obviously with Reggie being in the building with him there in Green Bay, it led a lot of credibility and really helped us feel real solid about this decision to bring him in and give him an opportunity here. I think when you look at Matt, Matt is one of those guys that even though he didn’t have a lot of opportunities, when he’s had those opportunities, he’s made the most out of those chances. We feel real good about that and feel real good about getting a young prospect at quarterback.

Q: The perception seems to be that Carson [Palmer] just walked away, that he didn’t want to play with the Raiders. Does that surprise you and is that correct?

Coach Allen: I’m not really going to get into all those types of negotiations. I think, at the end of the day, when we looked at it both from his standpoint and from our standpoint, we just realized that it was time for us to move on and move forward. We felt like Matt Flynn gave us a great option.

Q: When did the idea of trading for Matt Flynn first come up and at what point did it seem like a real possibility?

Coach Allen: I don’t know exactly when that magic day was when it actually came up, but this has been something that’s been talked about for quite some time now, that it’s a potential to happen. I think really everything got accelerated the last few days.

Q: Taking away all the finances and the salaries and all that stuff, did your team get better today?

Coach Allen: Yeah, absolutely, we felt like we got better. We feel like as many guys as we can bring in to the building that are looking for the opportunity to compete, looking for the opportunity to prove that they’re the type of player we can build around, any time we can get those type of guys in the building I think it’s a plus. I think Matt Flynn’s got those type of characteristics.

Q: Have you talked to Terrelle Pryor since the trade? What was his reaction?

Coach Allen: I have not talked to Terrelle as of this moment. I anticipate getting in contact with Terrelle and visiting with him on the situation.

Q: Do Flynn and Pryor go in to [training camp] with equal snaps?

Coach Allen: I think, obviously, no different than what we talked about earlier. I don’t think there’s been a whole lot of change as far as what our plan is from the quarterback’s perspective. We still want to have competition. I think the more competition we can grow with the quarterback position, the better that we’re going to be. I think once we get Matt in here, we get an opportunity to really start to work with him, I think all those things will sort themselves out. I don’t really get into all that at this point in time because I think what happens is the cream is always going to rise to the top. I think that’s what’s going to happen. The great thing for us is we don’t play a game until September. When we start getting into regular-season games, I promise you, we’ll have a plan.

Q: Just from a pure football standpoint, what type of quarterback is Matt Flynn coming into your team, into your system?

Coach Allen: I think he’s a smart, intelligent football player that understands how to manage the game and understands situations. He knows where to go with the football. I think this guy is, in my mind, one of those guys that understands the game of football, what his strengths are, what his limitations are, and he knows how to work to his strengths and limit the exploitation to whatever his limitations are. I think at that position, I think that’s something that’s really critical.

Q: How much did Reggie’s knowledge of Matt and his experience having been with him those years in Green Bay help you guys make this deal in terms of knowing the type of person you are getting?

Coach Allen: I don’t think you can ever substitute the fact of just being able to be in the building and watch a guy on a daily basis for four years like Reggie did. Obviously he spent time evaluating him coming out of college before they drafted him. He was able to watch him for four years in the building there studying under Aaron Rodgers. I think when you look at that, I think that was obviously a positive. I think for Matt Flynn, a guy that’s had an opportunity now to be in the league for five years as a backup quarterback, to learn, to grow, to develop, I would say he’s not unlike some other guys that you’ve seen go through the same type of process. What I mean by the same type of process: Guys that have been in the league for awhile before they get their opportunity to potentially be the starting quarterback. And guys that come to my mind, a guy like a Matt Schaub, who I was around in Atlanta, and a guy like Aaron Rodgers, who he obviously spent time behind there in Green Bay. We’re excited about the fact that we’re bringing in a young guy that we feel like has potential to be a starting quarterback in this league. We’re looking forward to the opportunity of having him on our roster and giving him a chance to potentially be that.

Q: How important was it not to give up picks in this year’s draft knowing that you guys are sort of limited in what you have?

Coach Allen: I think that was one of the things we really looked at. One of the things we didn’t want to do is we didn’t want to give up compensation in this year’s draft and looked to push that compensation back into 2014 and then a conditional pick there in 2015. I thought that was an important part of the deal.

Q: How much did you get to talk to Matt yourself before the deal was made?

Coach Allen: I talked to him a little bit. Obviously, I spent more time speaking to him this morning after we kind of had the terms of what we were trying to get done pretty much completed. I did get a chance to speak with him. He’s extremely excited about being here. He’s got to come in and go through the final processes of going through the physical and that kind of stuff, but I’m excited about having Matt here and I know he’s excited about being here.

Q: With Carson Palmer, have you called him yet today since you guys got Matt Flynn?

Coach Allen: No, I have not had conversations with Carson today. I talked to Carson I guess it was probably Saturday, over the weekend, and kind of explained where we were at, what the process was. I think he and his representation totally understand where we’re at.

Q: How does having Matt Flynn as opposed to Carson Palmer change what you guys are capable of doing on offense?

Coach Allen: I don’t think it’s going to change a whole lot. Obviously, we feel confident about Matt Flynn as a quarterback and giving him the opportunity to potentially win the starting job. I think we still feel positive about giving Terrelle Pryor an opportunity to compete and specifically having a package of things that he can do really well and giving him an opportunity. So I don’t know that there’s a whole lot that’s changed as far as the mindset of what we feel like we can do offensively.