SEATTLE — After the Carolina Panthers traded for Baker Mayfield, there's really only one team that may still want to shake up their QB depth chart for a potential starter and that's the Seattle Seahawks, who traded away Russell Wilson this offseason to Denver and received QB Drew Lock in return, among other assets.
The last starting-caliber quarterback in limbo right now is 49ers QB Jimmy Garoppolo.
The Niners are set to start 2021 first round pick Trey Lance this upcoming season and their intention to move Garoppolo has been well reported over the past five months. The 30-year-old QB has led the 49ers to a Super Bowl appearance and another AFC Championship Game appearance last season.
However, Garoppolo is coming off offseason shoulder surgery and will cost over $25 million this upcoming season before he becomes an unrestricted free agent.
Would Seattle try to make this move? Locked On Seahawks podcast host Corbin Smith joined Peter Bukowski on Locked On Sports Today to give his take.
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“I think in terms of engaging in trade talks, I'd go less than 1%," Smith said on Locked On Sports Today. "I think that John Schneider and Pete Carroll are doing what they always do. They're always going to make sure that every stone is turned over.”
Smith says the Seahawks obviously know Garoppolo well. He plays Seattle twice a year but he hasn't had a lot of success against the Seahawks. That doesn't change his outstanding starting QB track record, though.
“They know he's a competitor," Smith said. "They know that he's got a 33 and 13 record, as a starting quarterback. They know that he can command an offense and he's played in an offense similar to the one that Shane Waldron runs, but he's got that 25 plus million dollar salary cap hit.”
“John Schneider is too smart right now to be like, you know what, I'm going to rush into a trade for a guy coming off of right shoulder surgery that's got this big contract. If he gets cut, then we have a much different discussion," Smith said.
The other option for San Francisco is to cut Garoppolo. Under the labor deal, Garoppolo would be entitled to up to $2 million in salary from the 49ers for 2022 as an injury benefit, if he can’t pass a physical. If Garoppolo would get signed by another team, after passing a physical, he’d be entitled to nothing further from the 49ers. So would Seattle sign Garoppolo if cut? Smith still isn't sure they would go after him.
"I'm still hesitant to say that I think there's a strong possibility he would be in Seattle even if they cut him because I thought all along signs were pointing to Seattle making a move for Baker Mayfield and ultimately they weren't even willing to do what the Panthers did to get him," Smith said. "It seems Pete Carroll and John Schneider have put all their chips into one corner to try this with Drew Lock and Geno Smith."
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