Rookie minicamps are an equivalent form of evaluation as roughly the NFL Combine or pro day workouts. Let’s face it – it’s a bunch of guys running around aimlessly against other guys doing much of the same. Yet every year we fall prey to the victimless NFL crime of overstating the value of the rookie minicamps.
From DeAndre Hopkins in Houston to a slew of undrafted free agents from every NFL city there is rampant praise being thrown around and hopes have never been higher for some.
Hopes in Oakland rest with Arkansas quarterback Tyler Wilson, who’s had praise heaped on him at an alarming rate after a couple of minicamp days.
Wilson was taken in the fourth-round of April’s draft, which was two rounds later than most draft evaluators had him pegged. Wilson was widely regarded as a top ten pick entering the 2012 season but a series of unfortunate circumstances led him to be picked apart and subsequently see his draft stock plummet. All that in mind, it shouldn’t come to the surprise of anyone that Wilson is ahead of the ‘curve’.
Matt Flynn is in the enviable position of being surrounded by another productive collegiate quarterback that arguably fell in the draft
due to circumstances largely outside his control.
Flynn played second fiddle in Green Bay to Aaron Rodgers before jumping out of the shadow in a January 1 contest against Detroit. His six touchdown passes would vault Flynn squarely into the sights of a quarterback starved league.
While the market didn’t bear the expected fruit for Flynn, he was essentially handed the keys to Seattle and Pete Carroll’s ship. In Seattle, he was expected to hold down the offensive fort while a young but emerging defense could keep them in the bulk of games. As it turns out the offense would do more than just hold down the fort. Unfortunately for Flynn, it wasn’t in conjunction with his first full-time starting gig.
Flynn was demoted from starter to clipboard carrier with the emergence of Russell Wilson. The rest is history as Seattle turned the keys to the franchise over to a third round draft selection and ultimately Flynn was dealt to Oakland this offseason for a couple of future draft picks.
No one expected Flynn to be the long-term answer in Oakland — some even anticipated the much maligned Terrelle Pryor could give him some stiff competition in camp. Now, it appears that competition will be stiffened with Tyler Wilson drawing the attention of media goers and Raiders head man Dennis Allen.
Could Matt Flynn face the possibility of losing his inherited starting job to a mid-round rookie passer? The cart is officially before the horse as we prefer to make those judgments when the bullets are flying or maybe at least when pads are on.
Sure, it’s a real possibility that ‘the other’ Wilson could be the ‘next’ Wilson to replace Flynn. But let’s pump the brakes on this one and see if he can supplant Terrelle Pryor for the rights to be Flynn’s backup.