Browns considering trade for Jimmy Garoppolo pending Deshaun Watson’s appeal

Browns considering trade for Jimmy Garoppolo pending Deshaun Watson’s appeal

The legends around Jimmy Garoppolo and Deshaun Watson have run their courses concurrently in the 2022 off-season. Events in the near future could cause them to become more intertwined than they already are. Latest news about Jimmy Garoppolo’s Mary Kay Cabot reports that the Browns “will consider acquiring” Garoppolo if Watson’s suspension “increases significantly.” The latter was suspended for six games for violating the league’s personal conduct policy. That was about what the Browns expected, leading many to believe they would turn to backup Jacoby Brissett at the start of the season.

However, as expected, the league has appealed the suspension. Just as with Watson’s disciplinary proceedings, the NFL will again push for a year-long ban while also appealing to Peter Harvey-designate. This process is expected to result in a significant increase in the number of games Watson will not be available for. Since the Browns were built for immediate playoff contention, it would increase their urgency to acquire a more proven signal caller.

Of course, the possibility of Cleveland acting for Garoppolo isn’t new. However, last month it was reported that the Browns were not considering a move to land the veteran 49er. Garoppolo, 30, has a year left on his current contract with a non-guaranteed salary of just over $24 million. This number has recently fueled speculation that San Francisco will hold it for as long as possible to see if a meaningful trading market emerges in the coming weeks.

On that point, NBC Sports’ Matt Maiocco confirms it’s “unlikely at this point” that a team would trade for Garoppolo without him negotiating a new deal that lowers his cap hit for 2022. However, the only potential exception to this remains Cleveland; With nearly $49 million in Cap space, the team could comfortably take over Garoppolo’s contract and use him as a placeholder in Watson’s absence.

With the league looking to sideline Watson during the pre-season, an appeal announcement could come very soon. Once that happens, attention will once again turn to the Browns’ QB plans and where Garoppolo could fit into them.