FOOCH'S UPDATE 2:15PM: Barrows posted that the 49ers have denied being the mystery team mentioned in the ESPN rumor. Makes me feel better about shooting this down earlier. Could certainly be a smokescreen, but informative to hear.
Earlier today The National Football Post posted a story stating that the Browns had an offer of a first round pick for Brady Quinn. It is a mystery team, thus opening the door for random speculation by the media.
Enter ESPN.com's Rumor Mill.
The Rumor Mill article points to a San Francisco Chronicle article that says:
According to a report from the San Francisco Chronicle, former No. 1 overall pick Alex Smith looked pretty bad during the San Francisco 49ers' most recent minicamp. Smith's passes were loose, and it appeared that he was still suffering some after-effects of his shoulder surgery.
The article points to the recent visits of Matthew Stafford and Mark Sanchez as leading to speculation that the team isn't happy with Smith and Hill. Personally, whether or not they're happy with them, I see this as doing their due diligence.
The article mentions how Stafford and Sanchez will likely be gone at 10 and Freeman would be a reach there. This leads to their own bit of speculation:
Therefore, the 49ers could very likely be the mystery team that has been linked to a trade with the Cleveland Browns for Brady Quinn. The National Football Post has been informed by multiple sources that there is a team who has put a first round pick on the table in exchange for Quinn, and the Niners would make a world of sense in that role. The team has searched fruitlessly for a stud quarterback since the Jeff Garcia days earlier this decade, and by all indications Quinn is a superstar waiting for the right situation.
Needless to say, this "rumor" must be taken with a ginormous grain of salt. Whether you think this would be a significant upgrade or not, it's based on very weak circumstantial evidence at best. People can crow for Quinn in this post all they want, but I just wanted to clear up the rumor aspect of it.