NFL Exec Believes New Team Could ‘Jump In’ on Jimmy Garoppolo: Report

Jimmy Garoppolo

Getty Jimmy Garoppolo throws the ball versus the Falcons on December 19, 2021.

The San Francisco 49ers are officially less than five days away from reporting to 2022 training camp, and many fans and media members continue to wonder how much longer Jimmy Garoppolo will be in the Bay Area.

To recap, Garoppolo’s name has been linked to the Houston Texans and Cleveland Browns as potential trade destinations during the month of July. However, longtime Texans beat reporter and NFL insider John McClain said on the July 15 edition of KNBR’s Murph and Mac Show that Garoppolo isn’t coming to Houston, claiming “they have no interest.” Meanwhile, 49ers insider for The Athletic David Lombardi began to shoot down Jimmy G to Cleveland on Tuesday, July 19.

But now, one longtime NFL executive told Heavy’s Matt Lombardo that he won’t be surprised if someone from the NFC South decides to “jump in” on the chance to get the veteran quarterback.

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The Team the Exec Revealed

The longtime NFL personnel evaluator, who spoke to Heavy and Lombardo on the condition of anonymity, has Atlanta as the newest destination.

“Don’t be surprised if the Falcons jump in. You aren’t going to know about Desmond Ridder for two or three years, at best, and they can’t afford to wait that long,” the long-time NFL executive told Lombardo on Thursday, July 21.

Currently, the Falcons have former first rounder Marcus Mariota coming over from the Las Vegas Raiders. The second overall pick of the 2015 draft is reuniting with longtime Tennessee Titans assistant Arthur Smith, who was the tight ends coach when Mariota first arrived to the NFL. Atlanta is also moving away from Matt Ryan after 14 seasons with the Falcons, trading him to the Indianapolis Colts in March.

The Falcons had long been thought of as a team in need of a more stable and proven veteran QB like Garoppolo. However, the team decided to use the 2022 draft to fill their QB need with the standout from the Bearcats Ridder — whose Cincinnati teams won between 9 to 13 games in each season he was the starter and became a College Football Playoff representative in his final collegiate season.

Still, this longtime executive is still a believer that Jimmy G to the Falcons shouldn’t be ruled out immediately.

Personnel Director Says S.F. is in ‘Tight Spot’

One more NFL executive told Lombardo that the 49ers find themselves in quite the predicament with Garoppolo.

“San Francisco is in a tight, tight, tight spot,” an NFC personnel executive told Lombardo. “It’s either going to come down to trading him, or cutting him. And they’re going to lose the trade, no matter what.”

At this stage, one has to wonder what Garoppolo is really worth swapping for. As a QB in his 30s plus coming off shoulder surgery, he’s not considered in the prime of his career and most NFL teams have gone out to seek much younger signal callers to build around through the draft — a la the Buffalo Bills with Josh Allen, the Kansas City Chiefs through Patrick Mahomes, the Baltimore Ravens by catering to Lamar Jackson, the Cincinnati Bengals with Joe Burrow and the 49ers’ division rival the Arizona Cardinals with newly $230.5 million franchise QB Kyler Murray.

Plus, if Garoppolo were to be shipped away or released by mid-August, Jimmy G would most likely have to settle for a No. 2 role reminiscent of his time with the New England Patriots.

But if there was anymore substance to the potential Garoppolo/Falcons pairing, Lombardi posted this connection Garoppolo already has in Atlanta:

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