Moving Jimmy Garoppolo is becoming increasingly more difficult for the 49ers, and Matt Ryan being traded to the Colts for a Round 3 pick won’t help at all.
If the San Francisco 49ers were running out of options to trade quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo sooner than later, the market just became a lot tougher to navigate.
In yet another case of the Niners wishing they should have struck a deal to trade Jimmy G when the proverbial iron was hot, the recent sweep of quarterbacking events has made the prospects of general manager John Lynch moving Garoppolo that much tougher.
First, there was the Cleveland Browns trading for former Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson, which put fellow QB Baker Mayfield on the trade block. And after losing out in the Watson sweepstakes, the Atlanta Falcons then looked to offload their quarterback, Matt Ryan.
According to the Pat McAfee Show on Monday, that’s precisely what Atlanta is doing, trading Ryan to the Indianapolis Colts for a third-round NFL Draft pick:
Ryan, despite entering the final stages of his pro career, is a better quarterback than Garoppolo. Even if you want to argue that, saying the two are at least on the same par, what Atlanta got back in return completely derails San Francisco’s reported asking price.
Earlier on Monday, Pro Football Talk reported the 49ers had an offer of two second-round picks in exchange for Garoppolo, but Lynch didn’t immediately hit the “accept trade” button, suggesting he was waiting to see if another better offer would materialize.
Maybe it could, sure, provided other quarterback-needy teams like the Carolina Panthers, New Orleans Saints, Seattle Seahawks and now the Falcons all were interested in bidding against each other.
However, the wake of Ryan commanding a third-round pick in exchange likely forces those remaining teams to rescind the offer on which PFT reported.
If that deal existed not long ago, it wouldn’t be surprising if it’s gone now.
What can 49ers do with Jimmy Garoppolo after Matt Ryan is moved to Colts?
The 49ers are probably now looking at the hard reality of being forced to accept much less than those two second-round picks (if the report was factually true) in the wake of Ryan going to Indy.
As such, the Niners can effectively look at three options from this point onward, assuming Garoppolo isn’t going to be on the 2022 regular-season roster regardless of what happens:
- Accept the highest bid from teams like the Panthers, Saints, Seahawks or Falcons, hoping they bid against each other still.
- Hold onto Jimmy Garoppolo through the NFL Draft (potentially into training camp) with the hope his market heats back up again.
- Release him outright.
The latter doesn’t seem too likely, no. But the need to move on from the $25.5 million in saved cap space otherwise owed to Garoppolo this year is becoming more important to Lynch and Co. than recouping draft capital.
And that would be magnified with each passing week.
Developments do move quickly, though, so it’s possible San Francisco reacts quickly here.
Either way, Ryan’s trade from the Falcons to the Colts didn’t help the market. At all.