Flynn signs with Patriots, could back up Brady

Ryan Wood
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Green Bay Packers quarterback Matt Flynn (10) loses the football while being hit by New Orleans Saints outside linebacker Kasim Edebali (91) in the fourth quarter during Sunday night's game at the Superdome in New Orleans. The Saints recovered the ball on the play. Evan Siegle/Press-Gazette Media

After serving as Aaron Rodgers' backup for more than five seasons, Matt Flynn will get the chance to play behind another of the NFL's elite quarterbacks.

The New England Patriots signed Flynn on Thursday, according to multiple reports. He'll compete for a job as Tom Brady's backup and join an organization fresh off a Super Bowl XLIX victory. No contract details were immediately available.

It's the fifth NFL home for Flynn, the Packers' seventh-round draft pick in 2008. After playing his first four seasons in Green Bay, Flynn signed with the Seattle Seahawks in 2012. He also played with the Buffalo Bills and Oakland Raiders in 2013.

None of his stays away from Green Bay lasted long. The Packers acquired Flynn for a second time midway through the 2013 season, following Rodgers' broken collarbone that knocked him out of seven games. Flynn led the Packers to a 2-2 record in four starts that season, helping the team stay in playoff contention.

Late in the 2010 season, Flynn had one of the best games of his career against the Patriots. With Rodgers sidelined because of a concussion, Flynn completed 24-of-37 passes for 251 yards, three touchdowns and one interception. The Packers lost 31-27 at Lambeau Field, but it was a breakout performance for their backup quarterback.

In six seasons with the Packers, Flynn started six of his 46 games and threw for 2,227 yards, 16 touchdowns and 10 interceptions. He played sparingly last season, appearing in seven games and completing 8-of-16 passes for 66 yards, no touchdowns and one interception.

Flynn could have a valuable role early next season for the Patriots. The NFL suspended Brady four games to start the 2015 season for his involvement in the DeflateGate controversy, when the Patriots were found playing with underinflated footballs during their AFC championship game against the Indianapolis Colts.

The Patriots have backup quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo, a second-round pick in the 2014 draft, but Flynn would offer a veteran solution should Brady's suspension stand after appeal.

The Packers seem poised to replace Flynn's spot on the depth chart with fifth-year quarterback Scott Tolzien, who played college football at Wisconsin. Tolzien has started two games in two seasons with the Packers, finishing 2013 with a 1-1 record. The Packers also selected former UCLA quarterback Brett Hundley in the fifth round of last month's draft.

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