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Will Packers keep three quarterbacks?

Akeem Ayers, Karl Klug, Scott Tolzien AP

One year ago, the Packers had Vince Young, B.J. Coleman and Graham Harrell competing to back up starting quarterback Aaron Rodgers.

But by the beginning of the 2013 regular season, all three reserves were gone.

A total backup QB reshuffling isn’t in the cards this season for Green Bay, which has two capable reserves in Matt Flynn and Scott Tolzien. But as Bob McGinn of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel noted in a story published Wednesday, the Packers may have to decide whether to keep one or two backups behind Rodgers.

The competition between Flynn and Tolzien is “neck and neck,” Packers QBs coach Alex Van Pelt told the Journal Sentinel.

Rodgers expressed similar sentiments.

“I think they’re both playing well and it is close,” Rodgers said, per the Journal Sentinel. “I think they have made the No. 2 decision difficult and also keeping three quarterbacks difficult.”

According to Journal Sentinel, Flynn has practiced as the top backup this week and looks likely relieve Rodgers in Friday night’s dress rehearsal against Oakland.

There are downsides to keeping two or three quarterbacks. If the Packers keep just two, they will have let go of either Flynn, who’s risen to the occasion in relief of Rodgers throughout his career; or Tolzien, who may have more long-term upside than Flynn.

However, if the Packers go with three quarterbacks, they will lose a depth chart spot at another position.

That said, the Packers look to be a facing a more pleasant decision than a year ago, when it was quite clear Rodgers’ backup might not be on the roster.

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74 Responses to “Will Packers keep three quarterbacks?”
  1. cb2gbequalssb says: Aug 21, 2014 11:13 AM

    This man Rodgers is in mid season form, Those first two drives last weekend were sick! Carving up that suppose to be amazing st louis defense.
    He will torch the Seahawks secondary.

  2. vargavarga says: Aug 21, 2014 11:15 AM

    Tolzien is garbage. I don’t see any upside to retaining him. He wasn’t even that good at Wisconsin.

  3. In Teddy We Trust says: Aug 21, 2014 11:15 AM

    Funny that the competition was called “neck and neck,” since Aaron’s fragile collarbone will determine if either one plays.

  4. pkrlvr says: Aug 21, 2014 11:17 AM

    Its a no brainer….they gotta keep all 3.

  5. In Teddy We Trust says: Aug 21, 2014 11:17 AM

    If Flynn gets cut, he’s done. He got cut by three teams last year, two of them because he wasn’t as good as an undrafted rookie free agent (Matt McGloin and Jeff Tuel). If he gets cut, he may as well just kick back and wait for Rodgers to get hurt because he can only succeed with the Packers.

  6. Carl Gerbschmidt says: Aug 21, 2014 11:19 AM

    It’s an embarrassment of riches. This gonna be a good year!

  7. In Teddy We Trust says: Aug 21, 2014 11:23 AM

    Seriously, the Packers went through six backup quarterbacks (don’t forget Seneca Wallace). Has any team ever so badly mismanaged the backup quarterback situation? Two guys were the backups the entire offseason, then they bring in a third guy during training camp, then they cut all three of them. They sign Wallace and Tolzien, both fail, and finally they get Matt Flynn off the couch, who, in a Cinderella story, manages to come into a home game against the Vikings and bring them back to an epic tie. Biggest victory of the season, according to Packer fans.

  8. dragonflypack says: Aug 21, 2014 11:28 AM

    You try playing QB behind that Oakland offensive line….give Flynn a break. He got killed everytime he dropped back in the pocket. I say go with Flynn. he engineered 2 come from behind victories last year in relief of Aaron.

  9. vancouversportsbro says: Aug 21, 2014 11:31 AM

    Flynn has no future outside of Green Bay. I don’t understand why he can play well in Green Bay yet when Seattle coughed up the cash he was a huge bust. Like the above said if he’s cut he’s finished. Tolzien didn’t look good at all though

  10. larrydavidstern says: Aug 21, 2014 11:37 AM

    I’m not a Packers fan, but hasn’t Flynn proven to be a quality backup there? Not sure why you would cut him.

  11. crownofthehelmet says: Aug 21, 2014 11:39 AM

    They should use that extra body for another running back. You all know why.

  12. ariani1985 says: Aug 21, 2014 11:39 AM

    Its amazing that one fragile QB fate determines either you have a lousy season or you get throttled in the anual Packer playoff melt down party…….. Its amazing the Michael Vick and Daunte Cullpepper have as many playoff wins at Lamblow than your China doll QB…..

  13. greej1938l says: Aug 21, 2014 11:41 AM

    Tolzien didn’t look good at all….is kind of a stretch…in my opinion.

  14. mvp43 says: Aug 21, 2014 11:50 AM

    Whats more important? a 3rd QB or a roster spot?

    I say roster spot. Tolzien has looked decent enough to let Flynn go.

  15. purpleguy says: Aug 21, 2014 11:52 AM

    Just keep Rodgers healthy. If he goes down, is it really going to matter in the overall scheme of things if it’s Flynn, Tolzien or AJ Hawk?

  16. crownofthehelmet says: Aug 21, 2014 11:52 AM

    Not surprised there wasn’t holding called on that play.

  17. jbq2 says: Aug 21, 2014 11:54 AM

    Does Chase Rettig from BC have a chance to catch on with the practice squad? He is quarterback number 4

  18. thegenoatkinsdiet says: Aug 21, 2014 11:55 AM

    A Steelers fan making fun of another team’s RB? Today? Gotta be smarter than that, bro…

  19. hardrockfootballfanatic says: Aug 21, 2014 11:55 AM

    All teams should keep three quarterbacks. The league should allow all 53 players on the roster to be eligible to play and the third quarterback should be allowed to be active the entire game.

  20. conormacleod says: Aug 21, 2014 12:01 PM

    Keeping all 3 is ridiculous. Everybody on the planet knows that if Rodgers goes down again, GB’s season is over. So why waste a roster spot on a 3rd QB that will never play?

  21. conormacleod says: Aug 21, 2014 12:01 PM

    Keeping 3 QB’s will tell the world that they think Rodgers will get injured again.

  22. 4gone says: Aug 21, 2014 12:05 PM

    For those saying Tolzien didn’t look good. Look who he was playing with. Sherrod was trying to get him killed in the first series last week. Ted will not keep all 3. It would be an easy decision if Tolzien still had practice squad eligibility. If cut, San Fran would bring him back in a heartbeat because Gabbart is really struggling.
    They keep 2 and it will be Tolzien due to upside. My guess is if Rodgers goes down for extended period Flynn will still be available unless Giant’s grab him due to familiarity with offense.

  23. countyk66ers says: Aug 21, 2014 12:08 PM

    You cut Flynn. If Rogers goes down you resign him.

  24. cribbage12 says: Aug 21, 2014 12:12 PM

    Tolzein’s a keeper. This is Flynn’s decision. If he plays well the next 2 weeks they keep 3. If they cut him he’s there if he’s needed in mid-season. Downside of 3 is that means someone else they want to keep gets cut, and you know the rest of the league, especially our little sisters to the East are dying to sign anyone we are forced to let go. Packers in 2014: 12-4 regular season, Super Bowl Champs again!

  25. pkrlvr says: Aug 21, 2014 12:13 PM

    I wouldn’t say Tolzien didn’t look good. He made some nice plays in the last game.

  26. lionfaninsocal says: Aug 21, 2014 12:22 PM

    The number of QBs in pink bay is irrelevant. The Lions will be winning first place in the NFCN this season with a 13-3 record.

    Top 3 receivers in the NFL:
    1.) Megatron
    2.) Golden Tate
    3.) Eric Ebron (TE but he will be more productive in the slot than any other slot receiver in the league)

  27. stellarperformance says: Aug 21, 2014 12:22 PM

    If Flynn and Tolzien were available, the Vikings would take both of them over Cassel and Ponder so fast you’d think you were playing a video game.

    And as for Bridgewater…….meh.

  28. whatjusthapped says: Aug 21, 2014 12:27 PM

    This is so amazing simple that even a Viking fan could figure it out. You cut Matt Flynn because nobody else wants him, they think he is only good when he is a Packer (see Seattle, Oakland and Buffalo for further proof)

    You keep Tolzien for the back up job and should Rodgers go down, you can always reach back and sign Flynn since he is available anyway.

  29. joefelicelli says: Aug 21, 2014 12:35 PM

    I think it is more and more apparent that for a QB to be successful in the NFL, they need to be matched with the right scheme, and surrounded by enough talent to make plays. There are some guys who could make their own success, but they are rare. Flynn under McCarthy is a serviceable to good QB. Everywhere else, no capability whatsoever.
    Would Rodgers have been as good playing for another franchise, or in another system? He had the talent, but a lot of guys have had talent.

    Just look at the Bears. Cutler couldn’t do anything with the bad OL, and the lack of weapons in the passing game (Devin Hester as the #1 WR? please…), and the Mike Martz and Mike Tice years were just as bad. Trestman comes in, solidifies the OL, gets talent at WR and TE, and Cutler is poised for a big year.

    Not trying to start a Rodgers/Cutler debate, just pointing out that scheme fit and talent around a QB are what put them in a position to be successful, but they still have to put in the work and have enough talent to have success. Rodgers has that environment in Green Bay, Flynn has shown he can get it done in the same environment, and they don’t know about Tolzien.

    Offenses in the NFC North are going to be a lot of fun to watch:
    Mike McCarthy
    Marc Trestman
    Norv Turner
    Jim Caldwell
    All 4 have the potential to have top 10 offenses.

  30. packerenglishmajor says: Aug 21, 2014 12:35 PM

    Isaw most of Tolzien’s home games as a Badger and all of Flynn’s pro starts . . . Tolzien is the easy choice, ask the Sea-gulls.

  31. heyjoe737 says: Aug 21, 2014 12:39 PM

    Interesting comments about cutting Flynn because a) Tolzien is better and b) Flynn won’t get picked up by anyone else and would be available if Tolzien goes down.

    I don’t know if Tolzien is better, but he’s a better long-term prospect. If Flynn really is unemployable by any team other than GB, cut him. I mean what did Seattle pay him in guaranteed money, like $10 mil? He’ll be ok.

    But he saved the season last year. Even A-Rod would have been hard pressed to save the Dallas game. Must be something in the water in GB that works for Flynn!

  32. vikessuperbowlchamps2015 says: Aug 21, 2014 12:39 PM

    100% Rodgers will get hurt and the Pack will go 4-12. Meanwhile the Vikings will go 11-5 and win the North.

  33. dethsupport says: Aug 21, 2014 12:39 PM

    Given Rodger’s age, three would be prudent. You can’t expect him to play 16 game a year anymore.

  34. arianil985 says: Aug 21, 2014 12:51 PM

    My MN fan base is so sad we have to cheer for Rodgers to get hurt so we can maybe struggle to tie GB for 1 game. We’re actually pretty pathetic when you think about it!!!!

  35. packsoldier says: Aug 21, 2014 1:12 PM

    If they are neck and neck, it’s a no-brainer. You go with Flynn. He has proven he can get the job done in real games. Tolzien has never won a start.

  36. In Teddy We Trust says: Aug 21, 2014 1:31 PM

    You try playing QB behind that Oakland offensive line….give Flynn a break. He got killed everytime he dropped back in the pocket.
    ________

    It didn’t seem to bother Matt McGloin.

  37. tokyosandblaster says: Aug 21, 2014 1:37 PM

    Yes, Teddysmallhands, a team HAS mismanaged the backup QB situation worse than the Packers.

    They’re called the Vikings, and all they have are backups, who couldn’t even beat the Packers without Aaron Rodgers.

  38. ragnarthemagnificent says: Aug 21, 2014 1:40 PM

    There was once a QB named Flynn
    Besides Green Bay he couldn’t fit in
    He and Tolzien make the fans holler
    Choking in relief of A-Rodge and his broken collar

  39. dragonfly99 says: Aug 21, 2014 1:45 PM

    They would be foolish to cut Matt Flynn. He has proven over and over to be a good backup. He kept them alive last season and they would have never made the playoffs without him.

  40. numba1wiscosportsfan says: Aug 21, 2014 1:51 PM

    Big PACK guy here. Gotta cut Flynn, Tolz is more of the future. Sorry guy! GO PACK!!

    >

  41. tokyofilthblaster says: Aug 21, 2014 2:00 PM

    I’m amazed at how consistently the Green Bay Packers can produce HOF caliber QB’s.

    Better football for better people.

  42. dcviking says: Aug 21, 2014 2:12 PM

    … couldn’t even beat the Packers without Aaron Rodgers.

    ————————-

    True, however, the Packers also could not beat the Vikings without Rodgers; therefore, to put it in mathematical terms (keep your shoes on Sconnies, its not that kind of math):

    Vikings = Packers – Rodgers

    Think about that between your cans of Milwaukee’s Best and bratwurst bites

  43. ariani1985 says: Aug 21, 2014 2:49 PM

    I’m amazed at how consistently the Green Bay Packers get smoked at home in the playoffs…..

    Falcons, Vikings, Giants and 49ers oh my!!!

  44. stellarperformance says: Aug 21, 2014 3:07 PM

    Theoretically, the Packers did beat the Vikings without Rodgers. The sixteen point come-from-behind tie with a fourth-string street agent (that’s all it took,) was essentially the “victory” that gave the Packers their third North Division Title in a row.

    The Bears held all tie-breakers with the Packers. The “victory” with the Vikings was the difference-maker. The win over the Bears in the last game of the year wouldn’t have meant anything…..without the “victory” over Minnesota.

    Thanks!!!!

  45. themeccalambeaufield says: Aug 21, 2014 3:08 PM

    ariani1985 says:
    Aug 21, 2014 2:49 PM

    I’m amazed at how consistently the Green Bay Packers get smoked at home in the playoffs…..

    Falcons, Vikings, Giants and 49ers oh my!!!

    Im not amazed how pathetic and weak the Vikings and its posters are that the dysfunctional team finishes last 3 out of the last 4 years and the so called fans don’t really seem aware. They talk tough but are soon to be irrelevant in a few short weeks like every other year and football discussion will be left with fan bases of actual competitive teams. Tick Tock time is running out.

  46. themeccalambeaufield says: Aug 21, 2014 3:12 PM

    crownofthehelmet says:
    Aug 21, 2014 11:39 AM

    They should use that extra body for another running back. You all know why

    Really a Pittsburgh troll? How are the doobie brothers doing? We are are laughing and proud we have the rookie of the year running back over the idiot Bell. try coming with something a little better, very weak!

  47. boomboombrown says: Aug 21, 2014 3:20 PM

    Rodgers will go down again this year. Packers struggle to 5-11.

  48. trapshoot says: Aug 21, 2014 3:21 PM

    Keep both Tolz and Flynn.

  49. themeccalambeaufield says: Aug 21, 2014 3:34 PM

    See if you can guess who had these stats queenie fans 26-39 299 yds 4tds all in 1 half?

    Why yes its Matt Flynn who was on the roster less than 2 weeks. Just think if he played the whole game 600yds and 8tds against that hapless defense.

    Look what the man Rodgers did earlier in the year scoring on EVERY single drive in a rout. His stats by the way 130qb rating 24-29 285 yds, 30 yds rushing, 82% completion.

    Wow just wow! Thats total domination!

    Tick Tock….

  50. ariani1985 says: Aug 21, 2014 3:49 PM

    Look what the man Rodgers did earlier in the year scoring on EVERY single drive in a rout. His stats by the way 130qb rating 24-29 285 yds, 30 yds rushing, 82% completion.

    Wow just wow! Thats total domination!

    ——————————————–

    just think if he could do this in a actual playoff game…….. that tick tock sound you here is the packers getting eliminated once again by the 49ers or Giants…. ring a bell to you????

  51. deltaoracle says: Aug 21, 2014 3:52 PM

    “Unfortunately” the Pack just has too many good young players to keep 3 QBs. Teams are sure to be snapping up GB waiver guys left and right in the coming weeks. There are many young guys they just have to keep.
    Flynn is better now but also less apt to be claimed than Tolzien, and thus available to come back in an emergency.

  52. In Teddy We Trust says: Aug 21, 2014 3:57 PM

    Vikings = Packers – Rodgers
    _____

    Let me fix that:

    Vikings|Ponder = Packers – Rodgers + 3 (home field)

  53. In Teddy We Trust says: Aug 21, 2014 4:01 PM

    See if you can guess who had these stats queenie fans 26-39 299 yds 4tds all in 1 half?

    Why yes its Matt Flynn who was on the roster less than 2 weeks. Just think if he played the whole game 600yds and 8tds against that hapless defense.
    ________

    Actually, those were Flynn’s stats against Dallas, the worst defense in the league. He played the whole game and was on the roster for 5 weeks.

    His stats against the Vikings were 21-36, 218 yards, 1 TD. Just for the sake of accuracy.

  54. revelation123 says: Aug 21, 2014 4:15 PM

    It’s a good problem to have for the Packers. Having a battle at the #2 QB position shows quality of depth. Having a battle at the #1 QB position on the other hand…

  55. bordner says: Aug 21, 2014 4:22 PM

    Its amazing that one fragile QB fate determines either you have a lousy season or you get throttled in the anual Packer playoff melt down party…….. Its amazing the Michael Vick and Daunte Cullpepper have as many playoff wins at Lamblow than your China doll QB…..

    ——————————

    What’s really amazing is that our fragile little China doll QB has more Super Bowl rings than every member of the Minnesota vikings has ever won as a Minnesota viking ever in the history of their team.

    Then again, it’s the vikings we’re talking about… I guess not so amazing after all.

  56. tokyosandblaster says: Aug 21, 2014 4:28 PM

    So, in small hands we trust, by your logic,

    Packers with Rodgers are 16 points better per game than the Vikings?

    After all, the packers beat the Vikings in Minnesota by 13…add that home field advantage (3pts) and there you have it.

    Oh, and the Packers improved on defense while the Vikings lost their best player.

    So…

    Uh oh?

  57. themeccalambeaufield says: Aug 21, 2014 4:38 PM

    Here is another quiz?

    Who has the #1 best fan base in all the NFL according to Forbes?

    Why yes its the GREEN BAY PACKERS!

  58. deltaoracle says: Aug 21, 2014 4:41 PM

    Vikings|Ponder = Packers – Rodgers + 3 (home field)

    Vikings+Ponder-Rudolph = Packers – Rodgers – Finley – Bulaga – Barclay – Shields – Jolly – Hayward – Perry + 3 (home field)

    Fixed it better.

  59. crownofthehelmet says: Aug 21, 2014 5:01 PM

    A stoned Le’Veon Bell > Lacy

  60. stellarperformance says: Aug 21, 2014 5:08 PM

    Lacy 2, Bell 0.

  61. higheriqthanyou says: Aug 21, 2014 5:11 PM

    The real question is “Can the 49ers find one QB?”

  62. ariani1985 says: Aug 21, 2014 5:25 PM

    Why would the 49ers need a QB when they get to smash the hapless packers every year in the playoffs?

  63. tokyofilthblaster says: Aug 21, 2014 5:33 PM

    “Packers every year in the playoffs.”

    That sure has a nice ring to it.

    I think one of the reasons you see the Packers consistently fielding HOF caliber QB’s is that our fans are incredibly deserving as human beings.

  64. mypercyhurts2 says: Aug 21, 2014 7:26 PM

    Interesting:
    Packers are trying to figure out which QB should be second string, while ALL the Vikings QBs are “Number 2″.

  65. grubbyolebowski says: Aug 21, 2014 8:02 PM

    I think it would be great to keep both of them. But yeah, it would be hard to justify the spot with so many other talented guys.

    The best fan base on the planet according to Forbes(you beat me to it mecca).
    The most championships in the league.
    More hall of famers, mvps, sb mvps than the rest of the league.
    Perennial Super Bowl favorites.
    The list goes on.

    Meanwhile, up in Minnysooooda…

    Once the season starts, all of that nonsensical gibberish from the fan base up there will cease and they will be hoping for next year.

  66. arianil985 says: Aug 21, 2014 8:15 PM

    You know our Vikings are a horrible franchise when we have to boast about other team’s recent success against the Packers because we have none!!!!

  67. revelation123 says: Aug 21, 2014 8:26 PM

    “Here is another quiz?
    Who has the #1 best fan base in all the NFL according to Forbes?
    Why yes its the GREEN BAY PACKERS!”
    ==========================

    A few years ago SI polled NFL players as to what fanbase was the most knowledgable in the NFL.

    NFL players voted Packers fans as the #1 most knowledgeable fanbase in the league with 26% of the entire vote.

    Last year I went to Lambeau Field. Everything they say about the iconic Lambeau stadium is true. It’s an awe inspiring experience watching a game there. IMHO every NFL fan should should experience Lambeau at least one time in their lives.

  68. stellarperformance says: Aug 21, 2014 10:13 PM

    I had a vision. Rodgers will lead the Packers to two SuperBowls in the next five years, retire gloriously (and correctly,) followed by two more SuperBowls in the following three years…..led by Tolzien…..who will only be 30 years old. Keep Tolzien.

  69. simonator917 says: Aug 21, 2014 10:27 PM

    It’s an embarrassment of riches. This gonna be a good year!
    ==========
    Only on offense. If you honestly believe Julius Peppers is the answer for that defense I have some pork-belly futures I’d like you to invest in.

  70. themeccalambeaufield says: Aug 21, 2014 11:23 PM

    Revelation perhaps you didn’t see it but for the fan experience A Green Bay game is number #1 in the NFL and top top 10 of all sporting events in the world and that’s 3 years running! the queens don’t even finish in the top 50, no wonder they are so bitter. It took the state government to step in to keep the team, their fan support wasn’t there.

  71. icebowler says: Aug 21, 2014 11:39 PM

    I guess when you never develop any veterans, you always have to put your “trust” into rookies.

  72. axespray says: Aug 22, 2014 3:02 PM

    joefelicelli says:
    Aug 21, 2014 12:35 PM
    Would Rodgers have been as good playing for another franchise, or in another system? He had the talent, but a lot of guys have had talent.

    —————————–
    Or maybe, a guy that can make all the throws – get sacked 50+ times during a Season (twice) w/o letting it get to him (like Carr or Eli) – Be productive w/o a running game for most of his career – have to keep his cool when his doofus receivers drop every pass on 3rd down…

    …maybe, that dude is just a good QB and there’s no magic “syztemz!” – otherwise everyone would be using that magic “zyzytimz!”.

  73. axespray says: Aug 22, 2014 3:10 PM

    simonator917 says:
    Aug 21, 2014 10:27 PM
    If you honestly believe Julius Peppers is the answer for that defense I have some pork-belly futures I’d like you to invest in.
    ——————————

    You’re right – it’s not like we’ve got a ton of our defensive players returning from injury – or a host of young players with experience under their belt.

    We didn’t just draft a safety or anything – our entire hopes and dreams on defense are on the shoulders of a rotational 34 year old (cause a team that embodies “draft & develop” is now reliant on a decrepit shark that everyone thought went extinct millions of years ago).

    But hey – not like anyone turned a blind eye to our offense in the 2007 off season.

  74. tokyofilthblaster says: Aug 23, 2014 1:26 PM

    Tolzien is going to make it tough to cut him.

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