Sergio Estrada-USA TODAY Sports

Sergio Estrada-USA TODAY Sports

King proposes 49ers offer Jimmy Garoppolo, next year’s 2nd-round pick for Matthew Stafford

Jan 25, 2021 at 10:01 AM--

Matthew Stafford has the statistics of an elite NFL quarterback, passing for over 4,000 yards eight times over his 12-year career. What he lacks is playoff success. He has yet to win a playoff game.

Peter King of NBC Sports questions whose fault that is, though. Is it Stafford's fault? Or does the blame fall on the Detroit Lions, who can never put enough talent around the quarterback? Stafford has also seen a revolving door of coaches and general managers come through. King believes the blame falls on the organization more than the quarterback.

"He's been a shining light for a bad franchise and deserves to have a chance to win in the last few years of his career," King wrote during his most recent Football Morning in America feature.

Stafford is understandably frustrated and would prefer a fresh start rather than dealing with another coaching change.

The San Francisco 49ers are seen as a good fit for Stafford. However, it is worth noting that nearly every big-name quarterback rumor around the league has at some point been linked to the 49ers. Much of that has to do with the respect that head coach Kyle Shanahan has earned and the perception that Jimmy Garoppolo can't stay healthy and can be improved upon.

King believes Stafford will have a "robust" market, but acquiring the long-time Lion won't require the outrageous haul that others, like Deshaun Watson, might cost. The NBC Sports writer named the Indianapolis Colts, Denver Broncos, New England Patriots, Washington Football Team, Pittsburgh Steelers, and New Orleans Saints as potential trade partners.

And, of course, he includes the 49ers.

What would it cost Shanahan, John Lynch, and company to acquire Stafford from the Lions? King suggests that a fair offer by the 49ers would be Garoppolo and a 2022 second-round pick for Stafford. It would allow San Francisco to hold onto all of this year's picks and build around Stafford, adding to what many believe could be a strong roster in 2021. It's a potential pairing that King calls "intriguing."

"San Francisco talks a big game about loving Jimmy Garoppolo," notes King, "and maybe the franchise does. We'll see."

While King suggests the other teams on his list surrender their first-round picks (aside from the Broncos, who he writes would need to give up two second-rounders), San Francisco has the advantage of having a less dire quarterback situation than most of the others. The 49ers can include a serviceable quarterback in Garoppolo as part of a packaged deal.

Of course, Garoppolo's no-trade clause would mean he would have to approve of a move to Detroit. That might be the main obstacle to overcome, should the 49ers choose to trade away their starting quarterback. Would Garoppolo even want to go to the Lions?

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