Yesterday, a report indicated that the Patriots are “not expected” to trade back-up quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo. Which, well, come on now – you know how this time of year is.
So, it should be no surprise that a follow-up report indicates that, yeah, the Patriots would still consider trading Garoppolo.
ESPN’s Mike Reiss reports that, while the Patriots don’t expect to trade Garoppolo, “that doesn’t mean things can’t change in the future if a team makes an offer New England can’t refuse, or the Patriots simply change their current thought process.”
Put another way: the Patriots are like any other team with a valuable asset. They want maximum value if they’re going to pull the trigger on a trade.
How much value? Reiss suggests it could take a first round pick and a conditional first rounder. Yowsa.
Obviously there’s a huge difference between, say, the third overall pick and the 30th overall pick, even if each is nominally a “first rounder,” but you get the sense of the kind of package the Patriots are probably hoping they can land. As we’ve discussed before, the Browns would seem to be in the most enviable trading position, as they have – in addition to the first overall pick – the 12th pick, and the 33rd pick. They have flexibility that a team like the Bears, for example (3rd overall pick, 36th overall pick) would not so easily have, assuming it’s going to require a first round pick and more to turn the Patriots’ head.
My thoughts on all of this mostly look the same as they did yesterday:
“To be sure, even if you could take that rumor at its face, the report does not say the Patriots will definitely not trade Garoppolo. We’ve heard before that the Patriots are not expected to deal their back-up quarterback, who has one year left on his deal. We’ve also heard, however, that several teams are readying “blockbuster” offers to land Garoppolo, and it’s not as if the Patriots are unequivocally going to turn down any offer for him.
So, then, what do you make of a report like this, eight days from the open of the new league year?
My best guess is that it’s a signal that the Patriots are not intending on actively shopping Garoppolo, which could complicate the process of actually making a trade, since any team wanting to land Garoppolo is also going to want to know from him that he’s open to an extension. If the Patriots aren’t out there having active conversations and he and his agent are not involved in those kinds of discussions, it becomes harder to see a team stepping up with a monster offer.”
As we’ve discussed before, Garoppolo will have a say in this, too – if he’s unwilling to commit to a long-term extension with a trading team, there’s no way that team is going to give up a princely sum in trade for a single year of Garoppolo, and the hope that a contract can be worked out later.
I still think a high first rounder is too much for one year of Garoppolo, plus the right to sign him to a significant extension. We’ll see if the Patriots really do wind up playing chicken for some team to pull the trigger at that price.
As the world turns …