With NFL free agency set to officially kick off on March 17, all eyes continue to closely monitor the San Francisco 49ers and their quarterback situation. Considering the team has a realistic opportunity to trade starter Jimmy Garoppolo with just a $2.8 million dead cap hit to show for it, many are wondering what type of compensation the 49ers could receive in return for the two-time Super Bowl champion.
When asked on Friday about how much interest there is around the league for Garoppolo’s services, NFL insider Benjamin Allbright gave a telling response.
ALL the latest 49ers news straight to your inbox! Join the Heavy on 49ers newsletter here!
“I don’t think [there’s] as much as people, fans or media, might think,” Allbright told the Niners Nation podcast. “I think that the Niners are kind of frustrated with him a little bit and I think the coaching staff is a little frustrated with him.”
The reported frustration likely comes as a result of Garoppolo’s inability to stay on the field since arriving in the Bay. Obviously, injures are unpredictable and not always the fault of a player, but the 29-year-old has missed 34-of-64 games (53%) in four seasons with the club. The difficulty in evaluating the situation is amplified when considering the Niners have a 22-8 record when Garoppolo has started, including a dominant 13-3 Super Bowl run in 2019.
Allbright Names 3 Teams That Could Have Interest in Garoppolo
In expanding upon the Garoppolo situation, Allbright also confirmed a report from CLNS Media’s Evan Lazar on Friday that the Patriots had discussions with the Niners about a potential trade for their former second-round pick. In doing so, he also named three teams who could still make sense as potential suitors for Garoppolo.
“My understanding was that the Patriots had kind of reached back out to see about bringing him back in, obviously that was before they signed Cam Newton to his deal,” Allbright continued. “I think that there are teams who would be interested. I think Houston would be interested if they ultimately move on from [Deshaun] Watson. I think there are teams — it really depends, the Seahawks have a lot going on right now and the Bears obviously [with] the reunion back there in Illinois — that would have interest. I just don’t know the level necessarily of that interest.”
Of the three destinations laid out, Chicago would probably make the most sense given its nonexistent quarterback situation. Houston, currently wrapped up in an ongoing public standoff with Watson, and Seattle, closer than ever to potentially trading Russell Wilson, seemingly would be easier to rule out in the near future. Not to mention the chances of an inter-division trade — involving a starting quarterback nonetheless — are slim at best.
Despite the 49ers front office continuing to do their due diligence on the position, it would be surprising if someone other than Garoppolo was lined up under center when Week 1 rolls around, which general manager John Lynch has already alluded to.
Sam Darnold, Teddy Bridgewater Rumors Dispelled
In recent weeks, the 49ers have been connected to a number of other quarterbacks around the league, most notably Teddy Bridgewater and Sam Darnold. With both former first-rounders currently under contract, the most likely method of acquisition would be via a trade.
However, judging by the latest information from NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, Niners fans need not waste much more time envisioning either passer in a 49ers uniform next season.
During an appearance on KNBR’s Murph & Mac Podcast on Friday, Rapoport disputed an initial report from The Athletic’s Joseph Person that San Francisco was among a group of teams to contact the Carolina Panthers about Bridgewater.
“It turns out the 49ers did not call about Teddy Bridgewater, but if he was available, that would be an interesting option. … [The 49ers] did not call; did not. I’m sure they have some interest, if he is released, but they did not call the Panthers about it.”
According to the NFL insider, the 49ers are not considered serious suitors for Darnold either, as has been mentioned as a possibility by NBC Sports’ Peter King and others.
“The response I’ve received on the Sam Darnold situation is, ‘Do not expect the 49ers to be in it,’” Rapoport told Murph & Mac. “Maybe it could change I guess theoretically anything is possible, I never rule anything out in this ridiculous, stupid world. I do not expect the 49ers, as of my knowledge right now, to be in it.”
- 49ers Legend Joe Montana Gives Harsh Assessment of Jimmy Garoppolo
- 49ers Urged to ‘Stick It’ to Rival by Signing All-Pro Cornerback
- Raheem Mostert, George Kittle Approve of 49ers’ New Signing