There has been a lot of speculation about the deal struck between the San Francisco 49ers and New England Patriots. There had been talk the Patriots were holding out for one more first round picks, and that they might try and make a long-term transition plan work. Instead, out of nowhere, they dealt Garoppolo for a high second round pick.
One of the pluses to the addition of John Lynch has been the notion that he gets along well with folks. He developed relationships during his time on FOX Sports, and in his radio and TV spots, he seems easy-going and very comfortable. All of this might have helped the 49ers make their deal with the Patriots.
ESPN’s Adam Schefter was on KNBR Thursday morning, talking about the trade. He offered up an interesting take when pressed on how this deal got done. Essentially, he thinks Bill Belichick has great respect for John Lynch and Kyle Shanahan, and all things being equal, was willing to do the deal with them because of that. It wasn’t that he was “only” doing them a solid, but a healthy respect helped get things done.
“I think a lot of this, also, some part of this had to do with the fact that Bill Belichick has as much respect as he does for John Lynch and Kyle Shanahan. And when he looked at it, he could have traded Jimmy Garoppolo anywhere. Cleveland was dying for Jimmy Garoppolo. Ge decided he wanted to send him out of conference, to an organization he trusted.
“I know people will be skeptical of that, but I think he believes in these guys, and that they’re going to do right by Jimmy Garoppolo. And this will be a great environment to groom him and grow him, and have him learn. And he made the decision to trade him to those two particular individuals with the idea that he would not be in the Patriots’ conference, with the idea that they would not turn around and decide to go another direction and trade him to the Jets or Bills or Dolphins or a quarterback-needed AFC East division, because of the relationship between the sides.
“Basically, the Patriots did the Niners a solid here, to be perfectly frank. And, in this particular case, now the 49ers are the benefactors of that. Look, let’s not dismiss that you must do what’s best for your football team, period. That overrides everything. But beyond that once you get into the secondary factors, in any line of work and any big deal that’s done, relationships are a factor. They just are. And in this particular case, I believe that that played a smaller part, once you get past that you have to do what’s best for your organization, and that I think was a part of the ginormous trade that came down on Monday night.”
There are a lot of factors in play for the Patriots decision to trade away Garoppolo. It seems like time was running out for them, and they wanted to get something done while they had some decent leverage and a good relationship with their backup quarterback.
We’ve heard rumors Belichick wanted to stick it to the Browns based on his history with them. It makes a lot more sense that he thinks Kyle Shanahan can do a lot more to develop Garoppolo than Hue Jackson and the Browns. That coupled with this idea of respect makes this potentially a little clearer.