SANTA MONICA, CA – Thanks to a blockbuster trade with the Miami Dolphins by trading a ’22 third-rounder, and two first-rounders in 2022 and 2023 in addition to this year’s first-round pick, to move up to No.3, could a quarterback in play for the San Francisco 49ers?
San Francisco, two years removed from the Super Bowl, currently have Jimmy Garrapolo as their starter, but thanks to a combination of injuries and inconsistent play under center, could the Niners be looking at his replacement in the 2021 NFL Draft?
Considering head coach Kyle Shanahan’s offensive background in using a lot of play-action and bootlegs, the Niners would likely target a quarterback who is both mobile, athletic, and accurate on the run.
With the Jacksonville Jaguars projected to take Trevor Lawrence with the first pick, depending on what the New York Jets—and former defensive coordinator and new head coach, Robert Saleh—do at No.2 in deciding to go forward with Sam Darnold or move on and take either Justin Fields out of Ohio State or Zach Wilson from BYU, the Niners likely face a choice between Trey Lance or Mac Jones of North Dakota State and Alabama respectfully.
What Shanahan and general manager John Lynch must decide is if Garoppolo is still the guy for them and either sell the pick and trade down, or if they feel that they can get some value for him and trade Garoppolo (back?) to say New England for some picks, then San Francisco could be in position to dictate how the 2021 NFL Draft will go.
Either an early run on QB’s at 1, 2 and 3, or the first team that starts a draft day domino effect.
The general sense out of Santa Clara is that while Garoppolo is the starter for now. The key words in that last sentence is “for now”
Honestly, no NFL team moves up into the top five of an upcoming draft, unless its for a QB, and that they either want to go in another direction and feel that their current starter isn’t the final piece to get them over the hump.
Base on the actions from the Niners, and their need to get younger at the position, as Jimmy G is set to turn 30 this coming November and in the middle of a five-year $137.5 million contract, it would be hard to find a team willing to take on his massive salary.
So, what exactly are the Niners thinking? What QB target is at the top of their draft board? If I were to guess, I would wager on the forementioned Jones, who is beginning to rise up mock boards, has good mobility, accuracy and a quality NFL arm.
While Lance would be a possible target at No.3, as I mentioned before here, I feel that he may slide due to the lack of quality NFL competition he faced up in Fargo.
Whatever Lynch and Shanahan have up their sleeve, The Faithful will find out soon enough.