Mike McCarn The Associated Press Terrelle Pryor, who will start at quarterback tonight for the Raiders, has completed 14 of 24 passes for 190 yards and one touchdown this preseason.

Pryor hopes he'll secure starting QB job over Flynn

Published: Thursday, Aug. 29, 2013 - 12:00 am | Page 8C
Last Modified: Thursday, Aug. 29, 2013 - 12:16 am

SEATTLE – If this story seems all too familiar for Matt Flynn, well, it is.

While Flynn sits on the bench and rests a sore elbow tonight, Terrelle Pryor will get his chance to earn the Raiders' starting quarterback job when they end the preseason against the Seattle Seahawks.

It's almost the exact scenario as a year ago, when Flynn entered training camp with the Seahawks expecting to be their No. 1 quarterback, only to see rookie Russell Wilson race past him on the depth chart and nab the starting nod.

Now, Flynn will be stuck as a spectator watching whether Pryor can close an impressive preseason and solidify his case to start the regular-season opener Sept. 8 at Indianapolis.

"I'm going to keep showing the coaches what I can do good and keep getting better at the things that I'm not doing so good at, and that's something that I can clean up on and get better at," Pryor said. "That's the thing – I'm definitely not all the way there in terms of the playbook and in terms of just being a quarterback out there. I'm learning still.

"Don't get me wrong – I can lead if I was called upon to do it. I'm just out there getting better and trying to get in sync with the guys."

After being traded by Seattle in April, Flynn thought he'd finally be a starter in Oakland. That was supposed to be the case when he signed with the Seahawks during the 2012 offseason as the biggest free-agent quarterback not named Peyton Manning. That was also before the Seahawks drafted Wilson in the third round and watched him earn the starting job through a dynamic preseason that was validated in the regular season, when he led Seattle to 11 wins and a road playoff victory.

Flynn was slowed during the 2012 preseason by a sore elbow, and the same problem could be at the root of what gives Pryor his chance to secure the job.

"We've gotten a lot of time to evaluate that position," Raiders coach Dennis Allen said. "When you look at (organized team activities), when you look at the minicamps, when you look at what we've been through in training camp, the three preseason games we've played already, I don't think that's necessarily going to make that decision any more difficult.

"I think there's been some competition. I think both of them at times have done some really good things. Both of them have done some things that need improving. That's really where we're at with the quarterback position."

Flynn has not been bad during the preseason and has played with and against starters. He has completed 19 of 27 passes for 180 yards and one touchdown. But he threw two awful interceptions Friday against Chicago and has been sacked seven times.

Playing against mostly backups, Pryor has completed 14 of 24 passes for 190 yards and one touchdown with one interception and brought an added element with his ability to run and avoid sacks. He enters the preseason finale as the Raiders' second-leading rusher with 83 yards and their only touchdown on the ground.

Fans chanted for Pryor last week in Oakland while Flynn struggled. Pryor said his emotions were mixed hearing the calls.

"Obviously you want to be on the field and play, but you also have feelings for a guy that you're in a room with," Pryor said. "I'm in a meeting room with the guy 13, 14 hours of a day. I didn't think they went about it the right way. I went in and they got what they wanted, but I thought it could have been a better way, not booing him and stuff like that."

While Pryor's chance at the Raiders' quarterback job will be the focus, Wilson likely will make only a cameo appearance as the Seahawks prepare for their Sept. 8 opener at Carolina. Wilson played into the second half Friday at Green Bay, and despite throwing two interceptions, he was pleased with his performance and what Seattle's offense accomplished.

The priority for Seattle is cleaning up a penalty problem that has resulted in 34 flags this preseason.

"I think the biggest thing is being really disciplined with our offense and making sure that we don't get any more penalties," Wilson said. "I think that's our No. 1 thing, our No. 1 focus."

© Copyright The Sacramento Bee. All rights reserved.

Read more articles by Tim Booth



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