Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

Florio doubles down on Kirk Cousins-to-49ers speculation; Simms calls Cousins ‘more talented’ than Jimmy Garoppolo

Jun 17, 2019 at 12:28 PM--

Pro Football Talk's Mike Florio received a significant amount of flak from the Niners Faithful regarding some weekend speculation on his part that San Francisco 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan might still be interested in quarterback Kirk Cousins.

But the 49ers have a franchise quarterback, right? His name is Jimmy Garoppolo.

Florio wrote as part of a piece about the Minnesota Vikings' potentially troubling salary cap situation, that the team might want to offload Cousins and his contract after this season and that Shanahan might be interested. Of course, this is all contingent on both Cousins and Garoppolo having disappointing 2019 outings.

The 49ers have an out on Garoppolo's contract after this season and would only have to absorb $4.2 million of dead salary cap money should they decide to part ways with their quarterback after this year.

On Monday, Florio didn't back down on the potential of a Cousins-to-49ers scenario and pulled in fellow NBC Sports analyst, and close friend of Shanahan's, Chris Simms, who did nothing to shoot down the theory. Instead, he did the opposite.

Florio asks Simms, "Kyle Shanahan, if he can find a way to swap out Garoppolo for Cousins after this season, if the Vikings want to move on, if Shanahan wants to move on from Garoppolo, and he finally gets to bring this all together and thread that needle, you know him, is that something he would rule out? Is it something that he would rule in?"

"I don't think it's crazy, Mike," Simms responded. "I don't think this thought or this theory — I don't think it's crazy."

RELATED Mike Florio speculates 49ers could trade for Kirk Cousins if Jimmy Garoppolo has a poor 2019

Shanahan admits that the grand plan when he arrived in San Francisco was to eventually land Cousins. The team figured to do so last offseason, but the plan changed about four-and-a-half months before free agency kicked off. The New England Patriots offered up Garoppolo at the trade deadline, and Shanahan and general manager John Lynch jumped at the opportunity.

The rest you know. Five starts, five wins, and a five-year deal worth up to $137.5 million.

Is Pro Football Talk trying to reignite the Cousins-to-49ers speculation over a year-and-a-half after the initial rumors were seemingly put to bed?

Simms took things a step further and also speculated that the Los Angeles Rams might be interested in Cousins if quarterback Jared Goff demands too much money in his next contract. Although, Rams general manager Les Snead has stated he believes a long-term deal with his quarterback will get done "at some point."

"Could I see [the 49ers] going after a Kirk Cousins?" Simms continued. "Certainly, Mike. I really could. I could see it happening."

Simms, who also knows Sean McVay, believes the two NFC West coaches hold Cousins in high regard, especially within their offenses, and both worked with the quarterback in Washington.

Simms then took the conversation a step further.

"Hey, Kirk Cousins is more talented than Jimmy Garoppolo and Jared Goff," he added. "He's just a better quarterback for my money. Garoppolo, I know we haven't seen a ton of it, he shows glimmers here and there. But I think over the last few years, I'm very comfortable in saying I would rather have Kirk Cousins than Jared Goff or Jimmy Garoppolo."

You can watch the entire exchange below.

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