Seahawks enabling Palmer trade to Cards?

April, 1, 2013
4/01/13
12:29
PM ET
The Seattle Seahawks will get a late-round 2014 draft choice and a conditional 2015 choice from the Oakland Raiders for Matt Flynn.

Fox's Jay Glazer reported that news Monday.

The deal could coincide with and even help facilitate a trade sending Carson Palmer from the Raiders to the Arizona Cardinals. I've offered some initial thoughts on the prospects of Palmer potentially joining Arizona. We can follow up if Palmer indeed joins the Cardinals.

Seattle increasingly had motivation to trade Flynn for salary-cap reasons after new contracts for Percy Harvin, Cliff Avril and Michael Bennett consumed more than $13 million in space this year.

Reports suggested a deal with Oakland was all but done Friday, but there was no deal over the weekend. The lag time gave the Raiders a window to arrange potential deals involving Palmer. The Seahawks weren't in great position to push for a quicker deal. They wanted value for Flynn. They knew there wasn't a hot market for the quarterback beyond Oakland. They also would have needed Flynn to help facilitate any deal by negotiating a new contract.

Seattle is getting $3.25 million in 2013 salary-cap relief for Flynn. The late-round choice in 2014 and a conditional pick one year later do not represent tremendous value. San Francisco fared much better in getting a second-round choice for Alex Smith.

However, there are key differences between the deals.

Flynn, unlike Smith, has very little NFL game experience. The environment that helped Philadelphia leverage a largely unproven Kevin Kolb into a second-round choice and cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie in 2011 doesn't exist at this time. The price for drafting quarterbacks atop the first round has plummeted. Salary-cap growth has slowed. Teams are handing out fewer massive contracts overall; Flynn himself signed with Seattle last offseason for roughly half what Kolb commanded a year earlier.

So, Seattle wasn't going to get a second-round pick for Flynn from anyone. They'll have to settle for the cap relief, those late-round considerations and the knowledge that a frustrated Flynn won't be part of the dynamic at quarterback for them. The team can now draft and/or sign a cheaper alternative.

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