Niners – 2021 QB Carousel

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My predictions for where NFL QB’s will find new homes next year…

  • Matthew Stafford is old and expensive and is done in Detroit. But, there is one genius coach, Bill Belichick, who will welcome him to the Patriots after his disastrous Cam Newton experience.
  • Cam Newton had his best years playing for Ron Rivera at Carolina. The Washington Football Team will revive Cam under Rivera’s leadership.
  • Jimmy Garoppolo will be recruited by Robert Saleh after he becomes Detroit’s new Head Coach. Niners will be lucky to get a 4th round pick for him. More importantly, they will offload his huge contract and free up $24 million that they can use to sign their core players.
  • Alex Smith will return to the Niners and finish his career where he started. Alex has made a truly amazing recovery after his tragic leg injury 2 years ago. He has lead the Washington Football Team to a first place standing in the NFC East Division. Alex can run Shanahan’s offense effectively and will not make silly turnover mistakes. He is the ultimate team player and tutored both Kaepernick and Mahomes to Super Bowls. Alex will be the perfect mentor to the QB that the Niners will draft next year.

Replacing Garoppolo with another established QB simply does not make sense as they all have huge salary contracts and will prevent the Niners from keeping their young core players. Whether it be Kirk Cousins, Matt Ryan, Dak Prescott… they are all expensive…

There have been plenty of speculation that a Garoppolo/Belichick marriage is in the cards but given the choice between Garoppolo and Stafford, Belichick knows that Stafford is the superior QB. I also believe that Stafford is the best pure QB option for the Niners as he throws a beautiful and accurate deep ball. But, Stafford’s contract will not help the Niners sign their core players.

Don’t get me wrong about Garoppolo being a poor QB. While he isn’t elite, he is a very good QB and lead the Niners to the Super Bowl last year. The Niners have a 22-8 record when Jimmy G starts and a losing 5-23 record when Mullens or Beathard starts. The emphasis behind moving Garoppolo is purely to create more salary room so that the Niners can re-sign Trent Williams (LT) and tie up Nick Bosa (Edge), Fred Warner (LB), and Deebo Samuel (WR) to long term contracts. If the Niners can find a way to sign these core four players and still keep Jimmy G., I’m all for keeping Garoppolo. Can they make enough salary cap room by releasing/trading Weston Richburg ($8 mil), Soloman Thomas ($9 mil), Dee Ford ($20 mil), Jaquiski Tartt ($4.3 mil), Ahkello Witherspoon ($2.1 mil), Jerick McKinnon ($1 mil), and Robbie Gould ($4 mil). Additionally, after giving Arik Armstead a whopping  $85 mil contract over 5 years, he is having a down year. Could the Niners find a trade partner for Arik?

Regardless of whether Garoppolo starts with the Niners next year, the Niners must draft a QB in the first round. With the current standings, the Niners draft 12th. Ahead of them are:

  • NY Jets (will pick Trevor Lawrence (Clemson).
  • Jacksonville (will pick Justin Fields (Ohio State).
  • Cincinnati (has Joe Burrow).
  • LA Chargers (Has Justin Herbert).
  • Dallas (has Dak Prescott).
  • Carolina (has Teddy Bridewater but could draft Trey Lance (North Dakota State).
  • Atlanta (has Matt Ryan but could draft either Zack Wilson (BYU) or Kyle Trask (Florida).
  • Miami (has Tua Tagovailoa).
  • Philadelphia (has Carson Wentz and Jalen Hurts).
  • NY Giants (has Daniel Jones).
  • Detroit (has Matthew Stafford but could draft amongst Zack Wilson (BYU), Kyle Trask (Florida), or Mac Jones (Alabama).
  • San Francisco (has Jimmy Garoppolo but hope either Zack Wilson or Trey Lance will be available but highly unlikely unless the Niners lose all 3 remaining games to the Cowboys, Cardinals, and Seahawks). If the top rated QB’s are drafted ahead of the Niners, they should draft the best available Corner Back (Caleb Farley (Virgina Tech), Patrick Surtain II (Alabama), or Jaycee Horn (South Carolina). Then draft Jamie Newman (Wake Forest who transferred to Georgia this year and opted out due to COVID) in the 2nd round. He is 6’ 4” and 230 lbs and is a duel threat who can both pass and run.

In my last post, I suggested that the Niners should also part ways with Richard Sherman ($8 mil) and Jimmy Ward ($9 mil). After further analysis, they are still key components to the Niner Defense. Ward is under contract but Sherman becomes a free agent. The Niners should try to find a way to keep him as he is still an elite Corner and a great team leader.

Other NFL Predictions

  • Tom Brady and Drew Brees will NOT make it to the Super Bowl. Aaron Rodgers will make it.
  • Patrick Mahomes and Ben Roethlisberger will NOT make it to the Super Bowl. Josh Allen will make it.
  • Josh Allen will beat Aaron Rodgers in the Super Bowl.
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