The Panthers are likely one of the handful of options remaining for Jimmy Garoppolo and a would-be trade, but they don’t appear to be overly interested in the 49ers quarterback.
In an ideal world, the San Francisco 49ers would have traded quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo by now.
But no NFL offseason constitutes an “ideal world,” and this year’s offseason has been one of the more wild ones in recent memory. Not long after fans and analysts alike thought there’d be a robust market for the veteran signal-caller amid a bad offseason market at the position, a slew of other blockbuster moves has essentially forced the Niners to hold onto Jimmy G with the hope of a trade market picks back up again.
Perhaps it’s bad timing. Perhaps Garoppolo’s offseason shoulder surgery ultimately convinced many of the would-be interested teams to seek out other options.
At any rate, San Francisco’s trade market for Garoppolo has gone almost completely dry.
Panthers are one of a handful of Jimmy Garoppolo trade destinations
One could make the argument only three teams out there could legitimately be seeking upgrades at quarterback via a trade as things stand now: the Seattle Seahawks, the Houston Texans and the Carolina Panthers.
The 49ers aren’t likely to trade Jimmy G within the division, so let’s cross off the Hawks, and the Texans appear poised to let second-year pro Davis Mills continue his development under center in 2022.
That pretty much leaves the Panthers as the final remaining suitor, and the market is diluted a bit with the knowledge Cleveland Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield is also on the trade block after the Browns acquired Deshaun Watson from Houston earlier this offseason.
Carolina has enough cap space to absorb Garoppolo’s $25.5 million in owed salary, and there’s no doubting Jimmy G would be an upgrade over the Panthers’ current signal-calling option, Sam Darnold.
However, while the Panthers own the No. 6 overall pick in the 2022 NFL Draft, they’re not slated to pick again until the very end of Round 4 at No. 137 overall.
The Niners aren’t going to get a top-10 pick for Garoppolo, sorry.
Panthers calling 49ers’ bluff for Jimmy Garoppolo trade?
On Sunday, ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler (h/t Bleacher Report) said the Panthers have “done their homework” with regards to Garoppolo, indicating there’s possibly some interest.
However, according to one report from the Charlotte Observer’s Jonathan Alexander, San Francisco is still asking for two second-round picks in exchange for Garoppolo:
Now, the Panthers may still be interested enough in trading for Garoppolo, especially with the understanding of just how weak this year’s draft is at the position, and it’s not necessarily a good idea to use the No. 6 overall pick on a quarterback.
Should Carolina trade out of that spot, possibly accruing more draft capital along the way, perhaps a trade for Garoppolo would still be in play.
Yet that’s a shot the Panthers would have to call, not the 49ers.
Instead, the Niners are the ones who have to wait and see how things pan out with one of the final potential Jimmy G suitors out there.