The San Francisco 49ers have still not traded quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo and the latest updates don’t appear to be bringing good news for their attempts.
Garoppolo’s departure out of San Francisco is almost a foregone conclusion after the quarterback’s “goodbye” message to fans and media and recent reports continuing to tie Garoppolo to other teams.
Now, NFL insider Benjamin Allbright is saying that the market for Jimmy G has dried up after the free agency moves around the league, including the assumed No. 1 suitor in the Indianapolis Colts.
“The market on [Garoppolo] has cratered,” Allbright said on 95.7 The Game. “I don’t think the Colts are in on him at all. I think it’s going to be Mariota. I think the shoulder surgery thing is just adding salt to the wound there, and it’s just a bad situation… The Niners were hoping to get a pair of twos for him, and at this point, they’d be lucky to get a day-three pick [for] him.”
It seems apparent that the 49ers are now in do-or-die mode when it comes to Garoppolo. They either have to trade him for peanuts, or release him to avoid the massive $25.5 million salary cap hit his contract brings this season.
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Allbright Thinks Colts, Commanders Situations Speak Volumes
When elaborating on what went wrong for San Francisco, Allbright thinks that the 49ers priced themselves out of dealing Garoppolo when the time was right.
While the Colts may have been interested, they also learned firsthand was the market was like when they traded QB Carson Wentz to the Washington Commanders.
“I think it’s a combination of things,” Allbright said. “I think they overplayed their hand. Any time you’re going to see Washington take on Carson Wentz’s salary and give up two draft picks to do it, and not go after Jimmy Garoppolo, who’s been to a Super Bowl, I think that means you overplayed your hand because I feel [Commanders offensive coordinator] Scott Turner and the offense over there in Washington would be just fine with Jimmy Garoppolo at the helm. Carson Wentz is a giant question mark.”
San Francisco and general manager John Lynch may have believed that Garoppolo was worth far more than the rest of the NFL. However, it could also just be that his cap hit is simply too large, as teams have until March 16 to clear the salary cap line.
The 49ers can trade Garoppolo after the deadline and still get his money moved, but it will constrict them elsewhere.
Salary Cap Deadline and Garoppolo’s Money
If San Francisco wants to be able to make any more immediate moves in free agency, Garoppolo has to be released or certain players will need their contracts restructured. Even before the deals for new players like CB Charvarius Ward and LB Oren Burks, San Francisco is $4.2 million over the salary cap according to Spotrac.
Akash Anavarathan, analyst for Niners Nation, believes that the team will likely have contract restructures to allow them to get under the cap in time.
“We haven’t seen [Charvarius] Ward’s contractual info yet,” Anavarathan Tweeted. “But his 2022 cap hit will determine how much cap space the #49ers need to clear out. I’m going to assume that they have other restructures in place to clear cap space before 3/16, if Garoppolo doesn’t get moved before then.”
So, that would allow San Francisco to get under the cap, but it wouldn’t allow for any more movement in free agency. Perhaps the 49ers are content to not make any more moves, but it’s hard to imagine they were still planning to be dealing with Garoppolo’s contract by this point.