STACY ROST

Will Seahawks trade for Garoppolo? That and more from 49ers insider

Jul 19, 2022, 9:25 AM | Updated: Aug 8, 2022, 12:30 pm
Seahawks Jimmy Garoppolo...
Jimmy Garoppolo looks to pass against the Seahawks on December 29, 2019. (Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)
(Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)

We’re less than two weeks away from the start of Seahawks training camp. Before diving into the position battles, surprises, and questions of camp at team headquarters in Renton, we figured we’d take a look around the NFC West to get our bearings heading into 2022.

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Our first guest for this series on Bump and Stacy: NBC Sports Bay Area’s Matt Maiocco, who joined the show Monday to give a preview of the 49ers.

What’s the deal with Jimmy G – and will we see him in Seattle?

Why waste time dancing around this one? First things first: The biggest question heading into training camp (and beyond) for Seattle is at quarterback, so it’s no surprise that a pair of passers have been linked to the Seahawks this offseason. One of those players, Baker Mayfield, was just acquired via trade by the Carolina Panthers. The other remains with his current team, and that’s 49ers veteran Jimmy Garoppolo.

Bad news for Seahawks fans hoping for this trade Maiocco doesn’t see it happening.

“I don’t think the Seahawks would trade for him,” Maiocco said. “In fact, at this point in the offseason, I have a really difficult time trying to figure out what team would trade for him and trade for that $24.2 million salary he’s scheduled to make.”

That $24 million salary due to Garoppolo would be more than the Panthers are paying Mayfield, and even more than the Broncos are paying Russell Wilson (just in case you needed another reason to feel uncomfortable about Garoppolo’s cap hit). Maiocco, like a few other NFL voices, sees the Browns as the likeliest remaining trade partner for San Francisco. They’re in win-now mode and well want a tested veteran to start over Jacoby Brissett should Deshaun Watson be dealt a year-long suspension (as for Watson, a ruling on his suspension is expected to be handed own by the end of the month).

There is an option where Jimmy G could end up with the Seahawks, though.

“Where I think the Seahawks come in to play would be if the 49ers decide there’s not going to be a trade that lines up and they can’t afford to keep Garoppolo on the roster at his salary with Trey Lance ready to take over as the starter,” Maiocco said. “And maybe Garoppolo even says, ‘Hey, I’ve been a good teammate here … do me a favor and cut me free now and let me go find a place before we get too deep into training camp.’ If the 49ers decide to release Garoppolo, then I could definitely see Seattle come into play. I could see Seattle, Cleveland, and probably the Houston Texans as the three teams.”

Deebo’s deal (and what it could mean for DK)

There’s been a period of quiet, typical of July, after what was a flurry of offseason trades and blockbuster deals involving the league’s top receivers. Davante Adams, Tyreek Hill, and A.J. Brown all have new homes and the latter has presumably set the floor (about $25 million per year) for a contract extension for the next two players in line for deals: Seahawks star DK Metcalf and 49ers standout Deebo Samuel.

“Deebo showed up for the mandatory minicamp, which to me suggests that he plans on showing up at training camp,” Maiocco said. “Now maybe it’ll be a hold-in kind of situation. Because the 49ers realized that right now, (he is) scheduled to make $4 million this season, Deebo Samuel is grossly underpaid. So, I think something’s got to happen probably to enable him to even get on the field. I don’t know that he will practice until he has the security of that long term contract. But whatever Deebo Samuel’s issue is, what he has to realize too is what made him an All-Pro player last year was yes, he’s a very good receiver, but he adds an element no other receiver in the league has, and that’s the ability to catch passes and also line up in the backfield and run the ball like a running back.”

Metcalf and Samuel, who share the same agent, are both entering into the final year of their rookie contracts. They’re likely both eyeing similar extensions, and in the meantime, neither seems especially pleased about entering the year without that new deal. ESPN’s Jeff Darlington reported in April that Samuel requested a trade from San Francisco, while Metcalf didn’t take part in Seattle’s mandatory minicamp.

“I know that Kyle Shannahan and Deebo Samuel have a very good relationship,” Maiocco said. “There’s definitely no question in my mind that those two can make it work, that they can meet each other halfway, or whatever the case may be.”

The big question: Can Trey Lance be the guy

There are plenty of defensive stars returning along with offensive weapons particularly if Samuel remains in the mix but San Francisco will have a new stater at the biggest positions.

It was always going to be Trey Lance’s show the second the 49ers moved up to take him third overall in 2021. But the premier has been delayed a bit. That’s in part because they’d continued to find success behind Garoppolo, but it’s also because of Lance’s limited playing time.

Lance’s last full season of work was in 2019, his single year as a full-time starter with North Dakota State. His COVID-shortened 2020 season saw him appear in just one game, and since arriving in San Francisco he’s started in just two contests. Neither Seattle, nor anyone else around the league, is quite sure what they’re getting from Lance as a full-time starter.

“I think he has a lot of the tools to be a drop back quarterback using play action,” Maiocco said. “I think the way the 49ers envision this… is they believe he can do all the things that, say, Garoppolo can do from the pocket, while also bringing in that additional threat of being able to run the ball and do the RPOs…

“I talked to RGIII last week and he believes that Trey Lance can do all the things that Matt Ryan and Jimmy Garoppolo did while also doing the things that RGIII did when Kyle Shanahan was the offensive coordinator in Washington. Clearly that’s the best-case scenario.”

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Will Seahawks trade for Garoppolo? That and more from 49ers insider