The Panthers’ trade for Sam Darnold has a positive impact on Jimmy Garoppolo’s trade value, should the 49ers decide to move him sooner than later.
On Monday, it was the New York Jets and Carolina Panthers’ turn to generate a blockbuster, not unlike what the San Francisco 49ers and Miami Dolphins did a week earlier when the Niners moved up from No. 12 to No. 3 overall in the 2021 NFL Draft.
Only in the case of the Jets and Panthers, it involved Gang Green shipping off embattled quarterback Sam Darnold to Carolina.
Darnold, who flamed out amid a bad situation with the Jets after being selected No. 3 overall in the 2018 NFL Draft, still ended up commanding a sizable chunk of compensation. The Panthers ended up shipping off a sixth-round pick this year to go along with a second- and fourth-round pick in 2022.
That’s great news for San Francisco with regards to its current quarterback, Jimmy Garoppolo.
Recent reports suggest the 49ers would only move Garoppolo this offseason if a team offered up a first-round pick. In the wake of Garoppolo missing all but six games last year because of multiple high-ankle sprains, it’s a pipe dream to assume the Niners would get that kind of offer between now and the NFL Draft later this month.
But, hey. Set the asking price high, right?
San Francisco is essentially guaranteed to take a quarterback with the No. 3 overall pick, and the Jets’ own move to send Darnold away all but ensures they’ll do the same with the selection immediately before. Yet the 49ers also appear inclined to let their rookie quarterback develop behind Garoppolo, potentially for a full season, while the Niners eventually look to move Jimmy G at some point between now and the 2022 league new year.
And if San Francisco is looking for a decent return, Darnold’s trade is great news.
Jimmy Garoppolo should command more draft-pick compensation than Sam Darnold
If Garoppolo has a career-defining year with the 49ers in 2021, then the first-round NFL Draft-pick ask isn’t totally out of the question.
But let’s assume it’s another modestly solid year, not unlike his 2019 campaign where he threw for nearly 4,000 yards and was an integral part of the team’s Super Bowl run. Even with those numbers and accolades, Garoppolo has done far more than anything Darnold put together over his three seasons with the Jets where the latter never passed for more than 3,025 yards in a season while owning a lowly 13-25 record as a starter.
Garoppolo’s career record is 24-8, by the way.
True, Garoppolo is notably older. He’ll turn 30 years old this upcoming season, whereas Darnold will be 24 years old by the start of this upcoming season and still has the “potential” label associated with his development.
Still, getting two mid-round draft picks to go along with a sixth-round selection suggests the 49ers could command, at the very least, something similar for Garoppolo if they look to trade him at some point within the next 12 months.
A lot of this will depend on the landscape, yes. And the market could be drastically different between now and whatever time the Niners look to trade their starting quarterback.
But if there’s a team looking for a quality starter, chances are they’ll be picking in the top-half tier of the 2022 NFL Draft round, and all San Francisco would have to do is land some additional draft capital in the realm of what Darnold generated in order to recoup on that initial second-round selection it sent off to the New England Patriots for Jimmy G back in 2017.