The Jimmy Garoppolo trade rumors are heating up again, and the 49ers could theoretically find a perfect trade partner with this one AFC squad.
While there have been plenty of other storylines surrounding the San Francisco 49ers this offseason, the predominant story fans have understandably followed is waiting for the quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo trade to finally go through.
The Niners reportedly came close to moving the veteran earlier this offseason, yet an offseason shoulder surgery and an unforeseen quarterbacking carousel taking part across the rest of the league has ultimately forced San Francisco to continue retaining him.
But, with nearly all other available signal-callers having been moved already, Jimmy G is effectively the last one remaining.
Garoppolo’s camp also has been granted permission to seek out a trade, per recent reports, so it’s possible any talks start to heat up between now and Week 1 if they haven’t already.
However, of the possible destinations for the 30-year-old quarterback, there’s one that makes a ton of sense.
Jimmy Garoppolo trade rumors: Why Dolphins are a logical destination
Last week, Stacking the Board’s Cam Marino reported five teams had reached out to the 49ers about Garoppolo.
While Marino highlighted the Atlanta Falcons, one of the other teams he reported as having inquired was the Miami Dolphins:
There’s been buzz about the Seattle Seahawks and Houston Texans potentially being interested, but the Dolphins are somewhat new.
However, it does make a lot of sense.
For starters, and perhaps the biggest reason, Garoppolo would be reuniting with former Niners offensive coordinator, now-Dolphins head coach Mike McDaniel, who’ll likely be eager to put his own stamp on a restructuring franchise that has experienced a mixed bag of results with incumbent quarterback Tua Tagovailoa the last two years.
McDaniel and Garoppolo’s rapport is already established, and one has to figure Jimmy G would relish getting to go up against his former team, the New England Patriots, twice a year.
However, from an offensive vantage point, a would-be Garoppolo trade to Miami has some additional merits, as Angelina Martin of NBC Sports Bay Area pointed out:
"Garoppolo’s accomplishments don’t hurt compared to Tagovailoa, with a 33-14 record as a starter and recent appearances in the NFC Championship Game and Super Bowl under his belt.Plus, Miami’s offseason additions of Tyreek Hill, Chase Edmonds and Terron Armstead have created an offense primed for a veteran who’s very familiar with McDaniel’s scheme to step in and take the reins."
Additionally, our former FanSided colleague Matt Lombardo, now writing for Heavy.com, corroborated this theory by quoting a source close to the situation:
"“I know this,” the executive told Heavy. “Jimmy G is way more liked in league circles, as a player, than Tua is. He’s accomplished way more, and that matters at that position, almost more than anything else. And, remember, Mike McDaniel knows Jimmy really well.”"
Currently, according to Over the Cap, the Dolphins carry just over $16.3 million in cap space, meaning there’d have to be some sort of negotiations involving splitting salaries or a restructured contract, should Garoppolo be moved and with the intent of divvying up his $25.5 million post-trade salary.
While this isn’t necessarily ideal from the 49ers’ vantage point, even if they had to eat roughly $10 million to make the trade work while getting a mid-round NFL Draft pick back from Miami, it’d still clear up a hefty $15-plus million in much-needed cap space.
And just like he helped engineer a franchise turnaround when he arrived with the Niners in the middle of 2017, Garoppolo could then follow suit with a well-known face in McDaniel with the Dolphins and help push that squad up in the AFC rankings.