The Cleveland Browns and San Francisco 49ers both have significant question marks at the quarterback position, and both will be active over the next three months in trying to address the position. We know Kyle Shanahan will want to build around a quarterback, and it is no surprise Hue Jackson and the Browns will be on the prowl as well.
Browns beat writer Mary Kay Cabot ran down the Browns-related buzz from the Senior Bowl on Tuesday. Her sources are saying the Browns are interested in New England Patriots quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo, and will try and trade for him depending on how their upcoming draft evaluations progress.
The Browns hold the No. 1 and No. 12 picks of the first round, and with that and a lot of cap space, they are in the drivers’ seat to do a lot of things. Cabot said the team still has interest in DeShaun Watson, but thinks he still has to win over the team. Additionally, she said Mitch Trubisky is gaining momentum among various officials (none identified as being with the Browns) that were at the Senior Bowl.
The 49ers need to figure out what they want to do, and their new dynamic trio of Kyle Shanahan, John Lynch, and Adam Peters will have plenty to figure out over the next three months. Kirk Cousins is someone regularly connected to Shanahan. The team has the assets to trade and sign Jimmy Garoppolo. And of course, with the No. 2 pick, there is a good chance they will have their pick of draft eligible quarterbacks. The Browns are a strong bet to draft Myles Garrett, and barring someone trading up for that pick, the 49ers could take the quarterback they want, if they rate them accordingly.
The next month and a half is going to be long wait. Trades cannot happen until the new league year opens in mid-March. There will be numerous trade rumors at the NFL Combine, and I imagine we will have a good idea of what might happen in the days leading up the open of free agency and the trading period. At that point, we’ll have a good handle on the 49ers plans at the quarterback position, be it a Cousins or Garoppolo, or a rookie and some other veteran option.