Arm strength remains a question mark for Matt Flynn


When the late Raiders owner Al Davis was calling the shots, a strong-armed quarterback was a necessity. So it’s a strong sign of the changing times in Oakland that the biggest question about this year’s presumed starter, Matt Flynn, is arm strength.

Flynn arrives in Oakland having started just two games in his NFL career, so there’s not a lot of film of him to study. But Ron Jaworski of ESPN has studied the film that’s available and ranked Flynn dead last among the NFL’s 32 starting quarterbacks. The reason is Flynn’s lack of arm strength.

“The more throws I watched, the more his arm strength limitations were evident,” Jaworski said on NFL Live while diagramming a touchdown pass Flynn threw with the Packers. “The fade, as you see here, is not an arm-strength throw. It’s more of a touch throw. In fact, I was concerned that his few deep balls lost energy at the back end. They had a tendency to die.”

Jaworski thinks Flynn can succeed in the NFL, but he’ll need an offense tailored to his accuracy, and not an offense relying on arm strength. That doesn’t sound like the kind of offense we’re accustomed to seeing in Silver and Black.

87 responses to “Arm strength remains a question mark for Matt Flynn

  1. Sounds a lot like what the experts said about Rich Gannon. How’d that turr out? 3 years best offense in the NFL and a trip to the Superbowl, which btw, would have been 2 trips if not for the Tuck rule debacle. Arm strength is not a necessity to be a great NFL QB or to lead a great team, accuracy and a supporting cast is. but there is a reason he has the GB record for yards and TD’s in a single game and Im sure Favre and Rodgers had more chances agaisnt a crappy Lions team than Flynn did to set the record. Nuf said, time will tell. Haters will hate, waiters will wait and we will see..

  2. I remember a QB named Rich Gannon that didn’t have a strong arm, and he wasn’t too bad.

  3. jaws is about as credible as these mt. rushmores. I seem to remember people, jaws included, questioning Mannings arm strength last season. I will take mannings season last year from my quarterback position every year with a giant smile on my face.

  4. Jags new coach Gus Bradley got an extensive look at Flynn last year as he competed in OTAs and Training Camp. Given the Jags QB situation, he still took a pass on Flynn.

    Rob Johnson 2.0

  5. Having Joe Flacco or Matt Stafford arm strength is rare. But you do want a guy with adequate arm strength to make all the throws. I hear analysts say the deep square out is the hardest throw in football. So there’s a reason why I’ve never seen Matt Schaub attempt that throw.

  6. Gannon had supreme escape ability while Flynn had turtle survival skills. Maybe it’s just cause it was preseason but last year whenever he felt pressure he’d drop to the turf in a fetal position.

  7. Just find a Wes Welker, Rob Gronkowski or an Aaron Hernandez, then you won’t need arm strength and Matt will be fine.

    On second thought, Aaron Hernandez will find you. Then you have other problems.

    I definitely would not want to be on Aaron Hernandez’s cell phone, your days are numbered.

  8. Is it crazy to think that Tyler Wilson could be the best rookie QB this coming year?

  9. Us Packer fans have seen a LOT more of Flynn than fans of other teams have. Granted, most of it was in practice/preseason/training camp, but if given a chance I truly believe this guy can play the position and play it pretty well. I don’t know that he’ll ever achieve “elite” status, but I think he can be top-15, top-20. Only time will tell.

  10. God, this guy has been a Raider hater ever since he lost Superbowl 15. And what a noodle armed sissy he was in that game. I think he peed his pants in that game he was so afraid of the Raider defense. He and Coach Dick Vermeil were crying together for years after this game.

    Shut your Jaws. True eagle fans want to boil your noodle arm and eat it after that game.

  11. I’m a Broncos fans. I thought Matt Flynn played well VS the Lions a couple years back, allen will also put in a package for pryor.

    the sad part about this team is the bowel bowl piece of crap stadium, the only way Raider nation can sell out is putting green tarps (Jacksonville is laughing)

    I wouldn’t mind seeing this team go 0-16!

  12. Jaws is right. I followed this guy everyday of the Seattle competition. I saw him in every OTA , all of training camp and preseason games.

    The Raiders were sold a bill of goods because they’re not very good at assessing QB talent. (or developing it) The Hawks cut their losses and now have gotten their starter and an experienced and proven backup in Tavaris.

    Flynn is not a starter in the NFL. He is a backup at best and most of the league probably knows that by now. He is a version of Cassell and Kolb.

  13. A) Flynn couldn’t even get the starting job in Seattle, despite being picked up for that purpose.

    B) The Raiders are one of the worst franchises at evaluating talent at the QB position.

    C) The “nation” fanatics will simply use their favorite catch-phrase, and call all the doubters “haters”.

  14. Jaws did not attend OTA’s. Let’s get real here….Flynn, TP, and Wilson are essentially unproven’ s. Fact, Flynn had success in GB when he played. Fact, Wilson is the a gamer, watch film. Fact, TP does things the other 2 do not, but lacks the mid-throws and decision making.

    August will tell the tale on Flynn & TP, while Wilson gets a flyer. If , as one unbiased comment mentioned they go 0-16, it’s not because the offensive didn’t excel, it’s because of the revamped D. A min. of 7 wins is required for Allen to keep his job, the D is his baby.

    Wilson gets the starting gig…write it down, and excel at the position. He will be most accomplished Raiders qb draft since Stabler .BTW…Jaws is becoming a bottom feeder, no MNF, no SB win, and his a complete goof!

  15. Last point on Raider Nation….are we delusional? Sometimes. Do we expect the best every year? Always. The loyalty runs deep because of the success in the past, and our faith never falters….most franchises should be so lucky.

    Last time I looked, we represented the AFC West at the SB for better or worse, and it was worse. My $$$ is on this proud franchise to get there before anybody else. BTW…that Manning window has one crack left.

  16. Some have already mentioned Gannon. Ken Stabler didn’t have a strong arm either. Whether or not Flynn will succeed is anyone’s guess, but Al Davis didn’t turn away good QBs just because they were lacking a cannon for an arm.

  17. Only started two NFL games and not many college games either. Anybody who has faith in this front office, that faith has to be blind as a bat.

    Reggie Mac has been making some solid moves though.

  18. The Raiders are running a variation of the West Coast Offense this year and should have a much improved running game.

    Two reasons why Flynn’s average arm strength should be fine.

  19. Reggie McKenzie was the Packers’ director of player personnel and eventually the team’s director of football operations, while reporting to general managers Ron Wolf and Ted Thompson. Holding a position like that for the best draft and develop team in the league tells me he knows a little bit about football. As GM of the Raiders I doubt he would have wasted even a seventh round pick on a guy who can’t play. Maybe Flynn does need an offense that’s tailored to his strengths. Is there a team out there that uses an offensive scheme that is tailored to its QB’s weaknesses? That doesn’t make the much sense. It was even weird typing it. Maybe Flynn isn’t going to get you to the superbowl, but he is at least competent, dedicated and serviceable. You need a guy who can hold down that position for a few years while you draft some decent talent around him and develop a young QB.

  20. There is a reason he wasn’t a top pick, a top FA, etc. This guy is really a good backup who is getting some love because of where he was drafted. Glad he found some love but he’s not a quality 16 game starter and never will be.

  21. I’m so tired of arm strength. It’s the most overrated aspect of an NFL qb. There’s guys in the HOF with less arm strength than current good qbs. It’s a tired argument.

  22. Further, you “nation” fanatics keep bringing up Gannon, as if that means anything. The game has evolved in the past decade, to a point where it’s almost worthless to compare many of the old player stats, and associated game plans.

    The rules now favor the QB and wide-receivers, more than all the other positions, combined. Therefore, that should be every team’s focus. But to have a QB with lack-luster arm strength, you hurt your cause.

    Although, this is jumping the gun. There’s no way to know whether Flynn will even start, to begin.

  23. Christian Ponder doesn’t have a strong arm, and he looks like he’ll be a future hall of famer

  24. Remember when Aaron Rodgers fell from the potential number one overall pick to the late first round. What was the one thing everyone knocked him for?…Arm Strength…Flynn isn’t Rodgers, but arm strength is overrated and can be improved.

  25. hitdog042 hit the nail right on the head. Drew Brees doesn’t have the strongest arm I’ve seen plenty of his deep throws, the WR has to come back for it. His accuracy and pocket awareness is why he is great. Jaws is not a bad analyst and he’s not always right. Michael David Smith is correct in saying Flynn might need an offense tailored to his accuracy. I always believed you play to the strengths of your players, I’m quite sure the Raiders offense can adapt, it’s all a matter of will.

  26. aldog83 says:
    Jun 25, 2013 10:49 AM
    Kiper compared Jamarcus Russell to ELWAY when drafted.
    As a person who saw every Jamarcus Russell snap he had Elway’s skill set. If the game was close in the 4th quarter Jamarcus was going to win it.

    The Raiders didnt really give him anything to succeed. He had WRs with hands of bricks. No O-Line thus no running game. He didnt even have a Offensive Coordinator. Jamarcus had his off the
    Field problems but this was not the right environment for him to flourish. A seasoned vet(pocket passer) would have faltered let alone a 21 year old QB with limited college starts. He did pretty good under Kiffin and Knapp..when Cable took over it went all bad.

    Gradkowski did good because he run for his life behind Cable’s Oline..much like Russell Wilson actually.

  27. joetoronto says: Jun 25, 2013 9:48 AM

    No way it’s as weak as Andy Dalton’s.

    Andy Dalton keeps winning, Raiders keep losing!!!Bwahahahaha

  28. I love all the fools still saying that the Raiders can’t develop QBs.

    That may have been the case when Al was alive, but there is a new regime now.

    Everything you think you know about the Raiders is irrelevant. The only things that remains are the SB wins and the Silver and Black.

    HATERS who take the time to post on teams they despise (dougydougdoug this is you) are hilarious.

    You will not find me trolling charger, patriot or any other team I despise on a regular basis.

    Get over it HATERS.

  29. I was at the game against Detroit where Flynn absolutely TORCHED the lions (granted, the Lions torched the Packer D as well).

    He’ll be ok if you can get him some decent weapons. He makes good decisions and he can make the throws he needs to.

  30. e5280 says: Jun 25, 2013 10:02 AM

    “I’m a Broncos fans….

    …I wouldn’t mind seeing this team go 0-16!”


    That’s ok, even if the Raiders go o-16, they will still be laughing when the donkeys are 1 and done AGAIN!

  31. It will be hilarious if Flynn loses the job to another guy named Wilson.

    It’s also hilarious to read the comments from posters who blast Jaworski saying he doesn’t know what he’s talking about. Jaws PLAYED in the NFL, has been around football at the highest level his entire, adult life, watches more tape than all of us combined, has been in locker rooms, and talks to coaches, GMs, and players.

    You may not like what Jaworksi says, but you can’t say he doesn’t know what he’s talking about.

  32. I can see it now. CaszHole 2.0, expect to see stacked boxes all season long, here’s a thought to save time just watch CaszHole’s 2012 season, that is what you’re getting with No Win Flynn. I am not a hater, more of a realist. I know the Raiders fans call everyone that doesn’t buy the Kool Aid, a hater. I am expecting to see them finish off a 1-15 season and get the overall number 1 pick

  33. Not the kind of offense you are used to seeing from the Silver and Black? Can you explain exactly what kind of offense that has been for the last 10 years? I am ready for something new. If a short quick finesse game is it, thats just fine with me.

  34. corny715 says:
    Jun 25, 2013 9:21 AM
    Matt Flynn vs Tyler Wilson is as exiting as watching the wnba.


    Almost as exciting as spell check, hater.

    Raider Nation now, RAIDER NATION FOREVER!

  35. Joe Montana wasn’t known for “arm strength” but accuracy. I am not saying Flynn is the next Joe Montana, but I would take accuracy over arm strength if I had to pick one or the other.

    Schroeder was known for arm strength.

    Gannon was known for accuracy.

    Schroeder had Marcus Allen and B.Jackson to hand off to 30 times a game. At this point Raiders need accuracy.

  36. Guys who have questionable to fair arm strength can overcome it and do fine.

    Guys who have no arm strength at all just aren’t gonna make it.

    The real question is, which guy is Flynn?

  37. I’m a Wisconsin fan and love Russell Wilson, but arm strength? Not so much. He simply wins because he mostly throws the ball to guys wearing the same uniform as he does.

    Ditto Matt Flynn.

  38. Gannon, The Snake didn’t play against the speed of today’s defenders.
    Good luck Oakland with Ryan Fitzpatrick 2.0

  39. pixelito says:

    Tom Brady has no arm strength… Do you watch Football?


    Tom Brady has never had a Flacco-Farve-type arm.
    The last few years, it is definitely a weak arm that defenses can exploit. I know this and Dean Pees knows this. Take away the short pass – especially over the middle – and you beat Tom Brady. If he throws late down the middle – INTERCEPTION.

    If you take away the tight ends and slot receivers which Aaron Hernandez is doing a good job of single-handedly killing, Brady is nothing but an accurate QB that all costs flops to avoid a sack.

  40. In the past the raiders would have overspent for a strong arm quarter back and the media would have praised the choice and blown everything out of proportion. The focus now is areas of immediate concern: corners that can cover , lb that can stop the run and not over commit, building salary cap space!
    These things ant be addressed and sign a strong , high profile QB?
    The thought behind QB has to be someone who is tough, smart, and one who won’t make bad decisions under pressure.
    That’s what they are about right now. Next year maybe QB will be addressed but Wilson and Flynn just might handle the job

  41. Lol … This is why he got fired from MNF. He is so bitter about losing to the Raiders in the SB no matter what QB the Raiders would have … he would find something wrong with them.
    Has jaws ever been right about anything?

  42. Things can still change through training camp and the preseason. Right now, hands down, Flynn is the starter. He’s had the most experience as a pro QB even if its been on the sidelines.

    Lets get these 3 guys some reps and see what they have to offer in the preseason. That’s where our starting QB will be found. Not on some discussion bill board.

  43. Well the nation knows BSPN is the mecca of Raider Haters, and Jaws is just on their list of having that as a prerequisite in order to work there.

    Next up we will be posting were Silver of Yahoo, Trotter of SI, Kawakami of the SJ mercury news, Nancy Gay , or any body at the SF Chronicle, (except Ostler) will say something bad against the raiders, and we are supposed to be impressed by their knowledge of hate for the Nation.

    All I have to say is keep on hating. Go Raiders.

  44. Be real Raider fans, his arm is weak ….. he is a short guy standing in the pocket, and has little to no swagger to him.

    With that said he has a nice underneath game, some accuracy and some NFL record stats for his first 2 starts (2nd to cam newton in yards).

    Everyone saying Gannon, but Gannon was a lunatic of perfection, a screaming local leader, and extremely mobile in the pocket and had an IQ outta control in the offense. Not to mention HOF WR’s …..

    Just let it play out … but don’t be so defensive, Flynn and Raiders deserve QB criticism over the last 10 years ….

  45. I’m not expecting Flynn to be a ‘franchise’ type QB. I’ll be happy if he can competently manage a game for the Raiders while minimizing mistakes.

    The rest of the team needs a massive talent injection (which began with the last draft) so I can wait on getting the next dream QB.

  46. J. P. Losman and Jeff George had rocket arms, and Tom Brady and Joe Montana do not…Has a lot to do with your supporting cast.

  47. Big drop off from Carson Palmer to Flynn. Big. About 90 percent of my Raider brethren have no idea how steep the drop off is going to be. Some actually think Flynn was an upgrade! LOL.

    I think Reggie made some decent moves this off-season, but he has to be accountable for the record now. And this is a QB-head coach driven league. Reggie replaced Hue with DA and Palmer with Flynn. Major downgrades at both spots. Not good. McKenzie must own this.

  48. what about pryor in all these discussions he is the forgotten man he has been there paid his dues now give the kid a chance let’s see what he can do,big al must have seen something there. but we will never know if the raiders never play him

  49. Whoever said 2 trips to super bowl might as well have said 3 because there was also the Championship game played in Oakland against the Ravens and if fatman Tony Saragusa had not late hit and rolled over Rich Gannons shoulder we would have won that game and been in that Super bowl as well. Just saying.

  50. The Raiders will be the pleasantly surprising team this year and just might make the playoffs.

  51. Kenny the Snake Stabler supposedly had a weak arm and was left handed to boot. All he did when everyone said and I quote ” The Raiders will never win a super bowl with Ken Stabler at quarterback” and all he did was win the first super bowl ever for the Raiders in 1976 against Bud Grants Minnesota Vikings, who by the way were supposed to dominate with Fran Tarkenton and Chuck Foreman. Instead it ended the other way around and a wide receiver eitherwise known as mister sticky fingers Fred Bilitnikoff was the MVP but really should have gone to Kenny Stabler or Clarence Davis who rushed in a super bowl for over 150 yards.

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