Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

Rapoport believes the trade market for 49ers QB Jimmy Garoppolo will be good

Jan 17, 2022 at 11:48 AM--

Former San Francisco 49ers cornerback Richard Sherman, now with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, showed his former quarterback some love on Sunday during the Niners' playoff game against the Dallas Cowboys.

Garoppolo has been delivering some gutsy performances, playing through the pain of a torn ligament and chipped bone in his right thumb. He will likely require offseason surgery. But, for now, the veteran quarterback is toughing it out.

Garoppolo isn't playing mistake-free football, though. He has thrown three interceptions in his last two games, including what could have been a disastrous pick in the 23-17 victory against the Cowboys. That, paired with the injury, has made many wonder if Garoppolo's trade stock has plummeted.

The 49ers will likely transition to Trey Lance this offseason. The team surrendered a haul of future draft capital to select the quarterback with the No. 3 overall pick last April. With Garoppolo set to earn a base salary of $24.2 million in 2022, San Francisco may look to part ways with the polarizing player.

"The end of the regular season was a moment," Ian Rapoport said Monday morning on KNBR's Murph & Mac show. "I thought that was great. But I don't know that there's been questions of, 'How good is [Garoppolo]? Is he any good? Can he complete the throws when he needs to?' I haven't really gotten the sense that's a question. I think if you like Jimmy Garoppolo, and there are definitely teams that do, you kind of know what he is.

"If he played all 17 games, then he would be, to me, somewhere between the eighth- or ninth-best quarterback and the 15th best quarterback—something like that. So, if you trade for him, you're getting a pretty good starter. You can quibble which side of that he is on."

The 49ers are without a first-round pick in the next two drafts. They also surrendered a third-round pick this year in the trade to select Lance. The team would obviously like to recoup some of its draft capital in exchange for Garoppolo.

Rapoport believes there will be a good market for the veteran quarterback. That may only improve if the 49ers keep winning. After all, Garoppolo is 33-14 as a starter, now 37-15 counting the postseason.

"I like him, teams like him, [he's a] pretty good starter," Rapoport continued. "It's really just been about availability. I would say he's probably proven as much by playing right now with his hand that's going to need surgery, as opposed to any other thing. I think his market's going to be good. I think he's a legit starting quarterback.

"They came into this season thinking that they had a playoff roster, wanting to run it back with [their veteran] quarterback, and then figure it out after the season, hope his trade value is high. It's actually all working out. I mean, it looks like it has. The plan has been perfect, and execution has been great, so I think they're in a very, very good spot to get probably a significant haul for him."

You can listen to the entire conversation with Rapoport below.

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