tom brady jimmy garoppolo

Last season, a blockbuster trade sent shock waves through the NFL. The New England Patriots traded away the “heir to the thrown” in Jimmy Garoppolo to the San Francisco 49ers for a 2nd round pick in this years draft. Back in 2014, the Patriots used a 2nd round pick to draft Garoppolo, a solid and serviceable quarterback from Eastern Illinois (previously of Tony Romo fame) and were basically┬áready to hand him the keys to the kingdom once Tom Brady retired. Brady was in his late 30’s at the time of this pick, and people began to put a timeline on when Garoppolo would start. He got his chances in preseason and didn’t really send anyone rushing to the Patriots team store for a custom #10 jersey.

Then came the “Deflate-gate” suspensions. Garoppolo shined alongside Jacoby Brissett and went 4-0 during Brady’s absence. After serving the 4 game suspension, Brady took the reigns and ran the team all the way to the greatest Super Bowl comeback in history, possibly the greatest comeback in sports history. Now comes the 2017 season and Brissett has been traded to the Indianapolis Colts from Phillip Dorsett. That leaves Garoppolo and Brady at the QB position for the Patriots. Then, out of nowhere, Jimmy Garoppolo was traded to the 49ers for the aforementioned 2nd round pick.

Here is where eyebrows begin to defy gravity. After that trade, Jimmy went 5-0 when he was placed as the starter, earning him the richest contract in the NFL today coming in at a grand total of 137.5 million over 5 years. Yea, that’s serious coin for just 5 weeks of work last year. The Patriots brought back long time Brady backup, Brian Hoyer to Foxboro, and everything seems normal again. But, who is going to take over for Brady after he ultimately decides to hang it up? Yes, Brady is 41. Yes, he is the greatest QB to ever play the game. Yes, he has strange, but effective ways of working out and staying healthy. And, yes, he said he wants to play until he’s 50. It seems like every time someone defies Brady due to his age, he goes out and proves them wrong. I am not going to put a number on when he will retire or how much time he has left, because I don’t want this article coming back to haunt me 11 years down the road when Brady is still slinging the pigskin.

tom brady jimmy garoppolo

Credit: Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports

So, what is so strange about this trade? The Patriots could’ve obviously received more for this guy. They pretty much could’ve asked for the entire kingdom, and the 49ers probably would’ve given it to them. There seemed to be so much left on the table for a player so touted as the next guy to take over New England. So why was seemingly so much given away for so little? Whether or not Jimmy G. pans out in San Francisco is irrelevant. There is a rule of thumb in the NFL that I believe in. When you draft a guy in the 2nd round, if you trade said player, whatever you trade him for will show the return on the investment. This was basically just a wash. Draft a guy in the 2nd round, trade him for a 2nd rounder, complete wash.

I believe Brady wants the team to fail after he leaves.

We all read the ESPN article uncovering the turmoil brewing in the halls of Gillette Stadium between Brady, Belichick, and Bob Kraft regarding the trade, Brady’s training habits, and who has the power. Ultimately, Belichick is the guy with the power and the knowledge, Kraft has the coin, and Brady has the influence on Kraft. (OPINION ALERT) I believe Brady wants the team to fail after he leaves. There, I said it. Come at me bro!!! Hear me out. Brady is a man of legacy, and he has nothing left to prove. He has his rings, he has his MVP trophies, and he has more appearances than any other QB in Super Bowls. He is the greatest of all time, and this is coming from a Detroit Lions fan living in New England. I believe that if Brady retired and Jimmy Garoppolo took over and succeeded, that would cheapen the legacy that Brady so covets. We saw this when Brady was taken out for a whole season due to a torn ACL, and Matt Cassel took over and had a solid 11-5 record in 2008 (missed playoffs).

Now, this scared Brady by seeing the “plug-n-play” offense, and wondering his value. Obviously there wasn’t a QB controversy the next season. Matt Cassel is now a member of my Lions, and Brady is the GOAT, but that begs the question. When Brady does retire, and had Jimmy Garoppolo succeeded and even won a Super Bowl, would that cheapen Brady’s legacy and given all those accolades to Bill Belichick instead for creating such a versatile team? Would Brady be seen as less of the GOAT and more of just a major cog in the machine that is the New England Patriots? Now, I’m not saying Brady is just some guy off the street that they hired to play QB. He isn’t Scott Mitchell, but would that just change the perception of him.

Now, Kraft has gone on record, saying that he regrets the trade, and it makes no sense to a guy like Belichick, so that leaves Brady. I believe Brady used his clout with Kraft, Kraft pressed Belichick to keep Brady happy, and Belichick ultimately had his hand forced. This 2018 raft saw the Patriots draft a QB in Danny Etling from Perdue/LSU as well as still having Brian Hoyer on the roster. Neither of these guys are capable of taking Brady’s job, and that’s the way he likes it. There is a current epidemic of starting QB’s refusing to work with or talk to rookies or backups. This is just petty. Ben Roethlisberger is refusing to help Mason Rudolph, Joe Flacco is refusing to speak to Lamar Jackson. I get it, these guys are your replacement, and everyone knows it, but this is just childish. Neither Big Ben nor Flacco have anything left to prove, so accept that the team is bigger than you and move on.

Ultimately, time will tell whether or not the trade for Jimmy G. will be a good one for either team. But, what I do know, this is the strangest trade we’ve seen in a long time. Keep your eyes open for how these QB’s careers pan out.

Written By: Wayne McAlister