Yes, Jimmy Garoppolo remains in the 49ers’ plans. Those plans include trying to trade him for more than they gave up to get him.
More than three years after acquiring Garoppolo from the Patriots for a second-round draft pick, the 49ers want a first-round pick for the balance of Garoppolo’s contract, according to Mike Giardi of NFL Media.
That’s obviously too much. Letting it be known they want a first-rounder, however, likely means that they’d take less via the negotiation process.
The separate challenge comes from Garoppolo’s compensation. He’s due to make $25 million in 2021. Would anyone actually pay him that much this year, given that he has missed 23 games in three seasons?
Time continues to be on the team’s side. As long as they’re willing to carry his cap number through the offseason, there’s no rush to trade him. The start of on-field offseason workouts and then training camp become decision points, especially if the 49ers are concerned about an in-house (wait for it) schism among the pro-Jimmy G players and those who align behind whoever they take with the third overall pick in the draft.
If the 49ers can hold it all together while confirming that the rookie is ready for Week One, the 49ers could get lucky, like the Eagles did in 2016. A fluke torn ACL suffered by Teddy Bridgewater in late August opened the door for a first-round and fourth-round Labor Dat weekend windfall for Sam Bradford.
However it all plays out, it’s hard to imagine the 49ers keeping Garoppolo at $25 million for 2021, unless the guy they pick with No. 3 ends up being wholly unable and unfit to ascend to the starting job right out of the gates. If they can get significant compensation for the balance of his contract before camp opens, however, that’s a risk they’d probably take.