San Francisco 49ers should trade Jimmy Garoppolo before NFL Draft
The San Francisco 49ers are preaching patience with their quarterback position, but tradings Jimmy Garoppolo soon is the right move.
Jimmy Garoppolo is hopefully renting. If he bought, he ought to get a good real estate agent.
After watching then San Francisco 49ers trade two first-round and a third-round selection to the Miami Dolphins to move up from No. 12 to No. 3 overall in April’s NFL Draft, the writing has been on the wall. Garoppolo is no longer the starting quarterback, even if he’s currently atop the depth chart.
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In the weeks since the deal, word has leaked from San Francisco that it’s content with starting Garoppolo this year while the rookie behind him — take your pick of Mac Jones, Trey Lance or Justin Fields — learns the game. Of course, this is 2021 and 1981, so that’s nothing more than a line, designed to get better offers from teams who are made to believe the Niners aren’t desperate.
In reality, San Francisco needs to move Garoppolo sooner rather than later. If he were to stay in the Bay Area this year and play poorly, get hurt or get benched for the rookie, he loses a ton of value. Right now, the 49ers can trade Garoppolo for a solid return, likely a first-round pick.
It makes no sense for general manager John Lynch to sit on Garoppolo. If a team trades that much draft capital to replace a player, the team clearly doesn’t believe in him. Moving on and recouping some of the aforementioned draft picks is not only the correct decision, it’s the only decision.
In the talented NFC West, Garoppolo is almost certainly the best bet to win in 2021. He’s the veteran who only two seasons ago was mere minutes away from winning a Super Bowl and forever changing the narrative about himself. Unfortunately, Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City Chiefs happened, and so did an injury-plagued 6-10 campaign last season.
While it might mean a bit of short-term pain, playing the rookie behind a good offensive line with quality weapons is the obvious move. It sets up the team for long-term gain and, if the rookie shines, could even outplay Garoppolo right away.
For the next few weeks, the Niners can be patient and field trade offers, but before April 29, it behooves San Francisco to cut bait, recoup picks and move forward.