Whether you believe he was forced to do it or did so willingly, the fact of the matter is Bill Belichick traded quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo to the San Francisco 49ers for a second-round pick in the 2018 NFL Draft.
Less than a year before the trade, though, the New England Patriots head coach reportedly had zero interest in dealing Tom Brady’s then-backup.
The 49ers on Friday made Garoppolo the highest-paid player in the NFL. And after the team held a press conference to announce the deal, 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan spoke to MMQB’s Albert Breer about he and San Fran’s long-running infatuation with Jimmy G.
There are plenty of interesting nuggets in Breer’s story, but for Pats fans, the best bit pertains to Shanahan’s attempt to lure Garoppolo from Belichick during the 2017 NFL Scouting Combine.
“At that time, the only guys we thought were franchise quarterbacks that were being mentioned were Kirk (Cousins) and Jimmy,” Shanahan said, via Breer. “And I knew Kirk wasn’t going to be a possibility. And I remember asking Bill (Belichick) personally down at the combine about Jimmy, and very quickly he told me that wasn’t a possibility.
“So we moved on from that. He told me he wasn’t going to trade him.”
As you might expect, Shanahan was thrilled when Belichick had a change of heart.
“I asked Shanahan if there was aÂ holy s–tÂ moment when the call came in from the Patriots on Oct. 30, inquiring if the Niners would be interested in trading for Garoppolo,” Breer wrote.
“There really was,” Shanahan told Breer. “We were 0â8. We’d just gotten our asses kicked by Philly. I came in on a Monday and that was the last thing I was thinking about. And that ended up popping up.”
The rest, as they say, is history.