Chatter of Jimmy Garoppolo potentially returning to the Patriots dominated NFL discourse from the start of the offseason up until draft day.
But just because there’s smoke doesn’t necessarily mean there’s fire.
In a column for ESPN, NFL insider Jeremy Fowler provided intel on all 32 teams now that the dust has completely settled on the 2021 draft. According to Fowler, the wheels never really started turning on a Jimmy G-to-New England trade.
“As for the rumors about trading for Jimmy Garoppolo, I never got the sense this got close — or that San Francisco gave New England the impression it was overly eager to deal him,” Fowler wrote. “The prevailing belief is it just never got hot enough.”
The 49ers reportedly were only going to trade Garoppolo in exchange for a first-round pick. This would have been a hefty price for the Patriots to pay for an oft-injured quarterback, albeit one with multiple years of experience in Foxboro. New England seemingly is much better off with a veteran QB and potential future franchise signal-caller both on team-friendly deals.
That said, Garoppolo and Cam Newton both are on expiring contracts, and San Francisco could be more open to moving the former if Trey Lance proves he’s capable of taking the reins. So perhaps these Garoppolo-Patriots conversations will reignite next winter and spring.