Kyle’s update, 12:49 PM PT: Deshaun Watson has waived his no-trade clause and been traded to the Cleveland Browns on a five-year deal that gives Watson $230 million. After a day where we heard it was down to the Saints and the Falcons, Watson lands in the AFC.
With Watson landing in Cleveland, that leaves Carolina — a team without any Day 2 draft compensation — or the Colts, as a potential destination for Jimmy Garoppolo. If not, the 49ers waiting game could last a long, long time.
The Saints seem to be going back to Jameis Winston while I doubt Garoppolo would want to play for the Seahawks and I couldn’t see the team sending Jimmy there, either.
Kyle’s update, 10:45 AM PT: Josina Anderson is reporting the Seahawks would prefer a veteran starting quarterback with experience such as Matt Ryan or Baker Mayfield.
Ryan would be a solid get for Seattle but I can’t see Baker flourishing with the Seahawks.
It’s Friday, and the free agency moves are beginning to slow down. So far this morning, the only move that’s been made has been Minnesota Vikings wide receiver, Adam Thielen, restructuring his contract.
There are plenty of talented players available in free agency, and we’ll continue to update the signings as they come in. But the quarterback decisions remain the primary talking points. We’ve gone from “where will Jimmy Garoppolo get moved?” to “is Baker Mayfield going to Seattle?” to, finally, “is Matt Ryan the next quarterback to get traded?”
On Thursday, the Falcons pushed back Ryan’s $7.5 million roster bonus, which was due Friday, to Tuesday, giving Atlanta four extra days to hear Deshaun Watson’s decision. That way, if needed, the Falcons can find a destination for Ryan.
Ryan and Garoppolo’s numbers were similar in 2021. They both had a 20/12 TD/INT ratio. Jimmy completed 68% of his passes, while Ryan completed 67%. Garoppolo had a higher yards per attempt and quarterback rating, but he also played with a significantly better supporting cast than Ryan had in Atlanta.
Ryan, who turns 37 in May, has $40, yes, $40 million in dead money this year if traded. That contract seemed impossible for Atlanta to get out from under. Garoppolo only has $1.4 million in dead money, while the 49ers would save $25 million in cap space.
Are we sure Jimmy hasn’t turned down potential trade offers? For all of the “did the 49ers overplay their hand” quotes you see floating around, I think a better question you ask is whether or not Garoppolo denied a trade somewhere.
If you’re Jimmy, knowing his contract, why wouldn’t you? Your new team is going to ask you to restructure your deal instantly. The odds of you getting $25 million in 2022 for another team are slim to none. He’s not doing the 49ers any favors, but, from a business perspective, Jimmy doesn’t owe the team.
Do we really believe Washington’s first choice was Carson Wentz? I do not. But the fact that Ryan is likely to be moved — if Watson chooses Atlanta — before Jimmy is telling. The soap opera known as the NFL will continue to entertain us throughout the weekend.