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NFL Rumors: Browns to Consider Jimmy Garoppolo Trade If Watson's Suspension Increases

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured Columnist IVAugust 11, 2022

INGLEWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JANUARY 30: Jimmy Garoppolo #10 of the San Francisco 49ers looks to pass the ball in the NFC Championship Game against the Los Angeles Rams at SoFi Stadium on January 30, 2022 in Inglewood, California. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

Jimmy Garoppolo's future could lie in Cleveland.

According to Mary Kay Cabot of Cleveland.com, the Browns "will consider acquiring Garoppolo if Deshaun Watson’s six-game suspension significantly increases upon appeal."

Watson was suspended six games by independent disciplinary officer Sue L. Robinson after over two dozen women accused him of sexual assault or misconduct, though the NFL is appealing the ruling and seeking at least a yearlong suspension, per Cabot.

Garoppolo, 30, has spent the last five years with the San Francisco 49ers, leading the team to a 31-14 record in his starts, two playoff berths and a trip to the Super Bowl in the 2019 season, a 31-20 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs.

In the 2021 campaign, Jimmy G threw for 3,810 yards, 20 touchdowns and 12 interceptions, completing 68.3 percent of his passes.

The knock against Garoppolo has always been that he's a solid game manager but struggles to make the tough throws that elite options at the position can handle. The 49ers decided to roll the dice on a young, potential upgrade ahead of the 2021 season, trading the No. 12 pick, a 2022 third-round compensatory pick and first-rounders in 2022 and 2023 for the Miami Dolphins' No. 3 pick.

The team then selected quarterback Trey Lance and gave him a season to develop behind Garoppolo as the team's backup. Heading into the 2022 season, however, the Niners have committed to Lance as the starter.

As a result, Garoppolo became available, though offseason shoulder surgery has likely stopped teams from trading for him.

But if Watson ends up being suspended for the entire season, Jimmy G would be an interesting backup option for a Browns team that traded Baker Mayfield to the Carolina Panthers last month.

The team's top option if Watson is unavailable is Jacoby Brissett. Garoppolo would be an upgrade, so his future might rest on the status of the NFL's appeal in the Watson disciplinary case.

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