He is the answer to an age-old problem for a star-crossed franchise searching for a quarterback like the Holy Grail. He is the perfect signal caller at the perfect time for an imperfect team.
He will also never be a New York Jet.
Bill Belichick practically pitched a For Sale sign at a recent press conference: Jimmy Garoppolo can be had for the right price … unless you’re the one team that he despises above all others.
Belichick is willing to part with his winning lottery ticket to anyone except the organization that tried to sully his reputation (among other things) through the years.
The Patriots backup quarterback should attract plenty of attention this offseason from teams armed with draft capital.
Garoppolo would be an elixir for the Jets, whose quarterback quandary is their biggest obstacle. He would be the perfect quarterback for Chan Gailey after three years of tutelage from the greatest quarterback and head coach in NFL history. Garoppolo has showed flashes of brilliance transitioning from a college spread system to one of the most prolific pro-style schemes in the past 15 years.
It’s too painful for the Jets brain trust to imagine what the 25-year-old signal caller might be in green-and-white. Garoppolo, whose unofficial ceiling reaches the moon, will likely be moved elsewhere this spring.
The Cleveland Browns, owners of two first-round picks in the upcoming draft, make the most sense given their quarterback woes. The re-building team, which made a deal with New England for linebacker Jaime Collins a month ago, is the ideal trading partner. Cleveland could part ways with the Eagles’ first-round pick in 2017 (acquired during Philly’s move to get Carson Wentz) to land their franchise quarterback. Landing the No. 1 overall pick and Garoppolo would be a boon for head coach Hue Jackson.
Bill Belichick will be shopping Jimmy Garoppolo to all available suitors … except one.
(Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
Garoppolo’s value is enhanced by an uninspiring 2017 quarterback draft class that will likely include Notre Dame’s DeShone Kizer, North Carolina’s Mitch Trubisky and Clemson’s DeShaun Watson.
The free-agent market will be flooded, but Kirk Cousins is the only one worth considering if you’re willing to pony up a $100 million deal. The rest of the note-worthy veterans likely to be available: Tony Romo, Jay Cutler, Josh McCown, Brian Hoyer, Mike Glennon, Colin Kaepernick, Sam Bradford.
At a time when the Jets have held off on handing over the reins to Bryce Petty or Christian Hackenberg, despite being out of the playoff picture with five games left, Garoppolo would have been a godsend.
Belichick isn’t averse to trading a quarterback within his division. He dealt a 30-year-old Drew Bledsoe to the Bills in 2002 for a 2003 first-round pick, but there’s no chance he would move Garropolo to the Jets unless he didn’t think he was very good. All indications, however, are that Brady’s understudy has the makings to be a difference maker.
When asked two weeks ago about Brady’s dependability in practice each week, Belichick strategically injected the backup into his answer.
“We have a good quarterback in Jimmy, and Jimmy can go out there and run everything that Tom can,” Belichick said. “We’ve seen that. I’m not saying that he’s not capable or qualified to do it. He is, and he does a great job of it.”
“When we put Jimmy in there it’s really seamless,” Belichick continued. “Unless you were actually looking at the position, if you just could block out that position and say which guy was in there at quarterback, I don’t know if you would know a lot of times.”
Bill Belichick is telling folks it’s hard to tell the difference between Tom Brady and Jimmy Garoppolo (l.).
It was Belichick’s way of letting the rest of the league know that Garoppolo will be available.
Garoppolo threw four touchdowns (with no turnovers) and completed 71.2 percent of his passes to win both of his starts during Brady’s Deflategate suspension. He threw for 232 yards and three touchdowns with a 135.4 passer rating in just 25 minutes before suffering a shoulder injury against the Dolphins in Week 2.
He’s the best option for quarterback-needy teams.
Garoppolo is expendable because Brady is an age-defying force that has shown no tangible signs of decline at 39. Garoppolo will be in a contract year in 2017, making it the ideal time for the Patriots to move him. Rookie quarterback Jacoby Brissett’s return to practice this week after being on placed on I.R. in October (thumb surgery) is another indication that Belichick will be looking to move Garoppolo in the offseason.
Garoppolo will make $820,000 next season. His new team could place the franchise tag on him for 2018 to delay a long-term financial commitment.
If Garoppolo were on any other team, the Jets would have had a realistic shot at finally finding the answer to their five-decade long prayers. The organization has had a mind-blowing 29 quarterbacks start a game since Joe Namath took his last snap for it in 1976.
The 30th time could have been a charm.
Alas, the man who holds the cards would never give the Jets the one thing that has held them back all these years.
Source: NY Daily News Headlines Sports News