Alex Smith trade opens rich opportunity for 49ers

Washington Redskins quarterback Kirk Cousins (8) throws a pass during the first half of an NFL football game against the New York Giants, Sunday, Dec. 31, 2017, in East Rutherford, N.J. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun)

Alex Smith is a gift from God to the 49ers.

They continue to benefit from his existence. Smith will help the 49ers more this offseason than he ever did when he was on the team.

Bow your head and give thanks.

Before the Chiefs traded Smith to the Washington Redskins Tuesday night, the Niners were desperate. They wanted to negotiate a long-term contract extension with their free-agent quarterback, Jimmy Garoppolo, but had no leverage. They needed him. They were all in.

Garoppolo was not all in. He was dipping his little toe in the water and gazing around the pool. He never publicly said he wanted to sign a long-term extension with the 49ers. He may prefer to accept the franchise tag, see how things go next season and potentially leave the 49ers in 2019 if the team underperforms in 2018.

Now, thanks to Smith, they don’t need to worry about that possibility. They don’t need Garoppolo. They could take him or leave him at this point. In fact, they could trade him. And they should. They should trade Jimmy Garoppolo.

Let me explain.

Click here to read the rest of my column.

This article has 494 Comments

  1. I love what Jimmy Grapes has done.
    But this wouldn’t be an aweful idea.
    If Jimmy G doesn’t want to be here and hasn’t boughten in tonthis team, and wants to hold them hostage. Then tag me and bag em.
    I’d rather have Jimmy G, but I’ve wondered myself if the whispers of him not wanting to be here long term are true.

    1. What whispers? Where in the hell did u hear whispers that Jimmy didn’t want to be here long term? Because aside from Grant and some commenters, I haven’t heard anything of sorts. I call bull$$$$.

      1. I haven’t put much into the “whispers” there are YouTube channels with Niner fans that have a little access into the building and employees (they claim)
        And more than one have said this.
        I’m taking it with a grain of salt. But to me it does raise some questions as to why he hasn’t even come close to saying a maaaybe.
        And let’s face it. Our string of luck hasn’t been so good in the past 20 years or so.

        1. hey moron you mean your luck as been shyte……..

          ninermd is the king of dumb conspiracies…….the idiot watches youtube videos of ninerfans….lol…..lmao…..what a loser…….this is pure comedy…..

          who does that?

          notice how he puts “they claim” in parenthesis to cover his a$$……lol…lmao……this guy is a true moron……

          1. They’re live feeds of REAL Niner fans. Something you have no clue about Onelame.
            And steel… did I not say I take it with a grain of salt?
            Believe it or not some of these cats have actually called some of the moves the Niners have done, before hand. I’m not saying they’re a credible source, but I guruntee they have better ears than any of us do, and they damn sure don’t call the Niner fan base a nation. Like some wanna be smith jock sniffer does!

            Easy fellas. I know you’ve been hurt by the niners front office in the past.
            Find Your safe spaces. It will be ok.

            Oh Onelame is still love to meet you in person on the cruise. What do ya say Buddy?

        2. So u really just put your stock into “niner fans”, as a legitimate source? Wow, ok buddy, to each his own.

    2. Where did you hear whispers? Jimmy likely didn’t come out say he wanted to be here long term because that is part of the negotiating process.

      There are no sources for any of this “he’s not committed” stuff. It’s just Grant’s speculation provided here as a fact.

    3. You are just as nuts as Grant is. I am glad John and Kyle know haw stupid Grant is. Of course they are smart enough to listen to him. Makes you wonder if his dad is whispering in his ear.

    1. “Let me explain”? No explanation you could give would warrant the BS drivel I just read. You truly are a click bait master now, Grant. Congrats.

      And I see you’re still sticking to your pathetic ideas that because Jimmy didn’t come out and declare his love for all things 49er and demand to sign a 20-year contract that it means he has no desire to be here.

      Couple that with the fact that your idea is based in fantasy and is far from common sense. And when Jimmy ends his career with multiple rings and Cosuins has none I’ll be sure to reach out to you and remind you how stupid this piece was.

      1. This type of nonsense Cohnhead writes is the reason his column never appears in the Golden Nuggets blog at Niners Nation anymore.

  2. Absolutely not!
    Kirk Cousins needs everyone around him to perform better..
    As you seen in the games Garoppollo played..
    Jimmy G made everyone around him perform better

    1. Not to mention he took over a 3-39 roster counting last year. The Redskins have had a good roster for several years

  3. No. They should not trade JG. Cousins is a good but not great QB that needs the players around him to succeed. JG has more ability than Cousins and showed in just five starts as a 49er that he makes the players around him better. They will likely come at around the same cost $$ wise, and the JG effect is worth more than the draft capital they would garner by trading him. And such a move would not play well in the locker room. JG is also younger than Cousins.

    This is a Madden football type idea.

    1. Agreed. A fool’s errand. I wouldn’t entertain any trade for The Jimmy G Experience, nor would I f-around with some cockamany scheme that could blow up in our faces….

    2. “Cousins is a good but not great QB that needs the players around him to succeed.”

      Cousins’ supporting cast was worse than Garoppolo’s this season.

      1. Hmmmm, that is very much debatable. Maybe by the end of the season that was true due to the injuries Washington had and the 49ers rookies developing, but not at the start of the season. But Cousins has had better supporting casts in Washington in the past and still failed to make that team a true playoff calibre team. Cousins would be Jeff Fisher’s favourite QB.

        1. JG didnt start when SF had undeveloped talent. He came in at the end of a season when the team faced teams that adamently tried to lose.
          JG got away with a lot of mistakes. The previous starters were so bad that most fans have lost the skill of objective observation.
          Draft capital for a rebuilding team is almost unequivocal.
          JG on SF is equivalent to Drew Brees on NO. He can be a great QB on a bad team.

      2. Now that’s laughable not to mention Garoppolo was surrounded by rookies. Almost every nfl analysts says Garoppolo would be the number one free agent if he were available. All the NFL Total Access analysts say Kirk Cousins and Alex Smith are almost identical players.

        1. Alex Smith has actually won playoff games, guided a team half way to a SB appearance (yes, they would have got there as well with him at QB), and Smith has gone 7 straight seasons of throwing 8 or less Ints, Cousins has thrown 11, 12, and 13 (in that order) since his first full year as the starter.

          No idea why there is so much love for Cousins, he’d be outside top 10, closer to top 15, of QBs in the league and Smith is in the top 10.

      3. No. Just no. At BEST you could say they were equal. And even then I’d debate that heavily.

      4. I’m a fan of Jimmy G, but if we could get 2 1st rounders, a second, and a 3rd for him, we should absolutely trade him. I just don’t see a guy on a franchise tag commanding that kind of value. In fact, I think Cousins is the perfect example of why a guy on a franchise tag isn’t worth that trade value. Washington got nothing for him – he just walked.

        1. They’ll get a comp pick for him. But again, they weren’t getting anything for him on the franchise tag (no one was giving up 2 firsts for him or close to that), he wasn’t going to sign a long term deal that they were ok with offering him, so they could have franshised him again at over 30 million (ridiculous), pay him a much bigger contract than they gave Smith, or let him walk…this is the best outcome really.

          Some might also say they got a better QB in Smith than Cousins. For all of Cousins statistical “success”, it hasn’t translated into playoff berths or wins in the playoffs (the 1 time they got there). He is a poormans Matthew Stafford. Smith has made multiple trips to the playoffs, performed extremely well in the playoffs, and if you watched the games he was in, 2011 NFC Champ, 2013 AFC WC in Indi, 2015 vs NE, 2016 vs Pitt, 2017 vs Tenn, you could see there were more reasons for them losing than what he was doing at QB, especially that 2013 AFC WC game where he put up 378 yards and 4tds with NO running game, thats all on the defense and his coach not managing the clock, a known Reid issue.

      5. Based on what?
        WR – Goodwin, Taylor, Bourne vs Jamison Crowder, Josh Doctson, Ryan Grant, T. Pryor = Edge Washington – More than half of Goodwin’s receptions came after Jimmy became the starter. Prior to that his numbers should have been the same as Crowder. I would take Doctson, Grant and Pryor over Bourne and Taylor so I would say Kirk has a slight edge here.

        TE – Kittle vs Vernon Davis or Jordan Reed. = Edge Washington

        RB – Hyde and Brieda vs Perine and Johnson = Edge SF

        Where do you see Jimmy’s supporting cast being better?

        1. Goodwin was better than every receiver on Washington this season. Jordan Reed played six games. Pryor was horrendous. Did you follow the Redskins this season?

          1. And Goodwin ONLY became better because of his playing with JG. Don’t act like he was putting up 100 yard games before JG came on the team, because he wasn’t, but 3 of the 5 JG starts he puts up 100 yards (well 99 in one but the 106 and 114 equates out to 106 avg), and who knows what he might have produced vs the Rams had he not been concussed.

            1. Nah you’re wrong here. Goodwin had put up a 100 yard game before JG, and he had a couple of 80+ yard games as well. He was better with Garoppolo but he was playing well before then.

          2. Reed was injured but also had him for 6 games. And the backup was Vernon Davis both are better than kittle.

            Pryor was a 1000 yrd receiver in cleveland… in Cleveland!

            Goodwin was having a better year than in the past that’s true… But of his 56 receptions and 962 yrs… over half of his receptions and close to 400 of those yards came after Jimmy was the starter.
            Goodwin went from averaging 2.5 catches for 52 yrds to averaging 5.8 catches for 76 yrds.
            Keep in mind Goodwins previous high was 29 receptions for 431 yrds in a season. He nearly matched this in 4.5 games. So the idea that he was so good before Jimmy G. became the starter is laughable to me.

        2. Don’t forget the fact that Cousins played a few games with 3-4 backups on the Oline due to injury. That was clearly the biggest problem the Skins had.

  4. creative thinking grant, and a great way for the Niners to upgrade the roster rather quickly with more top picks… least 2 additional first round picks in 2 consecutive years, even if it is a Bills pick at #22 this April plus the Niners own at 9 or 10. Could equal 4 of the top 55 picks this spring . Niners do have the cap room to do the deal. also creates leverage for some good trade possibilities if the Niners want to go that way.

    1. Oh yes ole bright one and who would be as good as Jimmy. You sure your last nome is not Cohn.

    1. over two drafts, not in one draft……a 1st in both years, a 2nd or 3rd this draft and the other selection in 2019

  5. I was fine with Grant saying all this until he said “that’s not debatable”.

    You know whats not debatable? John Lynch and Kyle Shanahan know waaaaaaaaaaay more about building a football team than you.

    In my opinion Cousins will probably get more money and Jimmy did something with a bad roster that I haven’t seen Cousins do. Undefeated? Our roster was worse than the redskins over the last few years sans Jimmy G.

    I’ll leave it to the brain trust to make the actual decision but your “debatable” definition is ridiculous.

  6. I’d consider signing Cousins only if Garoppolo made it clear he wouldn’t sign a long term deal no matter what. Basically forcing a franchise tag year or two, then hitting the open market. Why? Because it’s way more fully guaranteed money than signing now.

    Happily I don’t think this will happen. I think Shanahan and Garoppolo have developed something special. Belly-chick wanted Garoppolo to land with a coach that was an ideal fit. And that’s what happened.

    1. Yes, I see the option presented by Grant as a plan Z for the 49ers if all else fails and they know they can’t sign Jimmy long term or if for some bizarre, unknown reason Jimmy comes to them and says he doesn’t want to be part of the team. But I highly doubt this will happen and I far prefer Jimmy to Kirk. The only reason I would consider this plan Z is because I do have to hire people and I’ve learned that they aren’t part of the company until the papers are signed – all prior assurances mean nothing.

      More interesting to me is if the team will attempt to use this scenario or one similar as a bit of leverage to move the talks along. Given that Lynch seems to be a straight shooter, I doubt he will.

      1. More interesting to me is if the team will attempt to use this scenario or one similar as a bit of leverage to move the talks along.

        I’d advise against it. Instead, I’d nominate Grant to go into the negotiation chamber with a large jar of Vaseline;>)

      2. The more I think about this plan Z, if everything goes to hell in a handbasket, I don’t think it can realistically be implemented. When Cousins becomes a free agent, he will be signed relatively quickly. Most of the articles I’ve read, including those from former player agents, strongly suggest that Jimmy G’s team will want to see how the market shakes out and that that is a reasonable strategy for his team to take. The 49ers will also probably consider it a reasonable strategy from Jimmy’s team, even though they would like to sign Jimmy ASAP. So, if that’s the case, Cousins will be gone and the team most likely won’t have any information at that point telling them that they have no chance of signing Jimmy G. So it seems to me that this really isn’t a reasonable last ditch strategy, because Cousins will be signed far too early.

          1. Yes, if they are as you’re suggesting all in on this strategy. I was talking about possibly using the strategy if Jimmy G for some reason won’t sign or decides he doesn’t want to be in SF. But based on timing I don’t see how this “if all else fails” strategy could work.

              1. Goodell has a hard on for the 49ers, and my advice to Lynch would be to play by the rules.

          2. Grant thanks for this article. This is what I have been saying the 49ers will do and should do. Cousins is the better value with the extra picks they will get from the JG trade but almost everybody hates Cousins and think JG is the next greatest QB but really he’s not.

            1. They won’t do this…..A couple extra picks in this years draft won’t rush them to the SB and maybe they shouldn’t rush that fast anyways. Shanny needs a couple good drafts/full off seasons to get the team ready for the playoffs, maybe this coming year. Jimmy at 26 w/a great fast release and accuracy will only get better and better under Shanny with a full off season and summer training.

              Nor should they do this….If they get Nelson and solidify the OL, get a couple tall fast WR’s, big fast RB, CB , Edge and others…again with a full spring/summer camp than Jimmy IMO will be pretty damn great and have maybe a 70% comp. avg. Jimmy has more up side than a decent 30+ y.o Qb. Cousins might not have chemistry here but everybody loves Jimmy!..and he could be the next great QB, who knows.

  7. Upon further consideration,……in a word:
    Sign JimmyG and let’s get on with it!

  8. Possible barriers to any deal like this…
    – for a team to give up draft loot like this, it would have to be a trade like Smith’s, with a long term deal worked out. Would Garoppolo refuse a long term deal with the Niners, only to sign an LTD with the Browns or Jets to make the trade happen?

    – Teams will consider the combined expense of multiple number one picks plus $90+ million guaranteed off their cap.

    – There Could be a gentlemen’s agreement between Lynch and Belly-chick not to trade Garoppolo to an AFC club.

  9. My main reason why I prefer Garoppolo to Cousins+picks…

    Garoppolo has my favorite combination of quarterback traits. Super fast release, fast eyes, quick feet. buys time to throw, van throw in a phone booth. He simply looks the better quarterback.

    Shanahan says he sees better than he hears, and my eyes told me Garoppolo was special when I saw his footage before the 2014 draft.

  10. Cousins was no longer an option once Garoppolo beat the Jags. Jimmy is worth the money. Also, removing the leader of the team would be a bad idea.

    “Cousins had a down year in 2017 — his passer rating fell to 93.9 and his completion percentage fell to 64.3. But, there are reasons for that. He lost to free agency two starting wide receivers (Pierre Garcon and DeSean Jackson). And he lost to injury a starting tight end (Jordan Reed), a starting running back (Robert Kelley), a starting guard (Shawn Lauvao) and a starting tackle (Trent Williams).”

    So is it true that Cousins is a product of the players around him? Jimmy won with a good roster (NE) and a lesser roster (SF). Jimmy is better and younger.

  11. Grant –
    Are you out of your skull??? You’re going to look like a complete fool for this article.
    Jimmy G is the face of the franchise now. He will be the top QB in the league in a year or two. He’s already better than Cousins and his teammates love him. He wants to be a 49er, he’s just listening to his agent and being patient so he can get the best deal possible.
    Trade him?? What the hell are you talking about!!?? The fan base loves Jimmy G and he’s brought the 49ers back from the dead!

    You’ve completely lost your mind!! You tried to get cute and make a big splash with this article but you way overthought it and choked big league!!
    This asinine article may ruin your career Grant. It will come back to haunt you.
    I thought you knew more about football, I was wrong.

  12. I threw out an idea like this a couple of months ago and while I don’t see it happening due to the possibility of teams calling the Niners bluff, I’d do it in a second. Cousins is an excellent QB who continues to be disrespected due to his team not winning more games but as was pointed out in Grants article, there are very good reasons for that. He’s been a top ten QB since becoming the starter and proved this year he can still play at a high level even while his team was falling apart aroun him.

    I like Garoppolo and I’m completely on board with signing him long term, but getting a slew of picks and Cousins would be a far better scenario for this team.

    1. This is kind of true. But it all depends on what you see Jimmy G becoming.

      If you see him as being a great qb then you dont make the deal. If you see him as being a borderline top 5 guy then you do trade him.

      Put simply, looking back to say 2005, would you have traded Manning or Brady for McNabb or Palmer and 2 firsts?
      A excellent qb is worth more than a good qb and draft picks but that qb has to be excellent.

      1. Did you mean top 5 guy? Isn’t a top 5 QB usually a great QB?

        And let me add, that, imo, it’s about scheme fit as well. Based on the five games we saw, it really seems like Jimmy G and KS are a very good match. I can’t really think of another offense that would be a better fit for Jimmy, which offense doesn’t already have a starting level QB.

        1. This changes from time to time. But I meant boderline, because normally qb’s 6-10 are clearly below the top guys. For years there was a clear delination between the top guys and everyone else. It was Brady, Brees, and Manning, and more recently Rodgers.
          The point was that those players were so much better than qb’s 6 -10 it wasn’t even close, only Big Ben entered the conversation with them from time to time.

          Cousins is a top 10 guy and guy I think could win a superbowl but if you believe Jimmy Could be the best qb in football or in that argument then you do not make the trade because the draft picks are still not worth it.

          1. I haven’t seen the ability to get the ball out accurately with a guy a half a second away from your grill like Jimmy since Marino, and maybe Rodgers, have you?

      2. Good response Shoup. The reason I would make the deal is because of the QB you are getting with the draft picks. Is Garoppolo better than Cousins? It’s possible, but it remains to be seen, and Cousins has shown he’s a top ten QB for 3 years now. If the Niners feel Garoppolo is the next Brady, then I agree with you in not trading him, but he doesn’t have enough of a resume to make that determination. It was a fun exercise which has no chance of happening for various reasons, but Cousins and a number of extra high picks like that would be a no brainer for me.

        1. Is Garoppolo better than Cousins? It’s possible, but it remains to be seen…

          The only thing worse than being blind is having sight but no vision…;>)

          1. I’ve got plenty of vision Razor. Just look back at some of the times I was in disagreement with the majority of the board over certain topics like Tomsula, Kelly, Armstead and Goff for evidence ;)

              1. Sure was. I said he was the best pocket passer I had seen in some time and was worthy of being drafted #1. One or two others on here – I believe Brodie was one of them – felt the same way. Everybody else didn’t think he was and you especially were disparaging the kid in a number of different ways.

              2. You don’t judge a man’s career by part of a rookie season. That is why so many – including you – were wrong about him.

              3. I wasn’t wrong about him in 2017. I said his chances for success more than doubled with the hiring of McVay. You can look that up too if you’re so anxious to embarrass me…;>)

              4. You were just covering in case he did turn out to be something. You actually said he was a bust in a discussion with me long after hedging with that. I don’t want to embarrass you which is why I’m not posting what you said about Cousins prior to the acquisition of Garoppolo. I just want you to be consistent.

              5. To be clear, Rocket. I said Goff would be a bust in 2016, and he was. Prior to the start of the 2017 season in a discussion with Grant Cohn, I said Goff chances for success went from 30% to 65% under McVay. Now as bad as Goff had played in 2016, I’m not sure how you arrived at the conclusion that I was CMA. It seems you are trying to get blood from a stone….

              6. You stated he was a bust in a discussion we had long after hedging your bets with the percentages under different Coaches. You’ve never thought much of the kid and that’s fine, but be consistent.

              7. Ok, man. He’s your guy, and I’m happy for you two. I’m going to go trim my hedges now.

              8. rocket – That was me. I was a big Goff pre-draft cheerleader. I was ripped throughout the 2016 season for praising him.

                What did I see? All the things I like in a quarterback. Quick release, nimble feet, good vision. We was also a full two years younger than Wentz at 21 years old. Age is one of the more overlooked factors in draft evaluation.

              9. Yeah, I was definitely one of those ripping on Goff. Didn’t like him anywhere near as much as the media and talking heads did. Had nice traits but wasn’t convinced about the mental side of his development.

                Tbh, while I know he put up good #s this past year and the team did well, I’m still not that impressed with Goff (in that I still don’t think he’s as good a prospect as he was made out to be). Obviously he can be a starting calibre QB in the NFL in the right system, but I really do think McVay deserves kudos for the way he was willing to restructure his offense to make Goff comfortable, give him a lot of easy throws that created big run after catch yardage and hide some of his limitations in terms of game reading. Yes, that’s what good coaches are supposed to do, but props to McVay for being willing to check his ego and mould his offense to his QB.

              10. Yep, McVay saved Goff and it looks as though the Bears are taking the same approach with Trubisky. I said Fox would be sacked before the season and that Trubisky would struggle under him. Kudos to the Bears for admitting their mistake, and making an effort to save him….

              11. The NFL’s quarterback development shortage is worse than its rookie quarterback shortage. When quarterback is 22 years old it’s about direction, not perfection.

              12. Brodie,

                Yep I remember we were pretty much on our own in pointing out the qualities Goff had and how Matt Waldman had praised him in his breakdown. He’s going to be a tough one to go against for the next decade for sure. Good thing we found our own QB.


                but I really do think McVay deserves kudos for the way he was willing to restructure his offense to make Goff comfortable, give him a lot of easy throws that created big run after catch yardage and hide some of his limitations in terms of game reading.

                McVay definitely deserves a lot of credit, but he didn’t dumb his offense down or make major changes from what he was doing in Washington including talking to the QB right up until the 15 second cut off.

                Goff also wasn’t a product of easy throws or short throws for that matter. He was 7th in throws attempted 20+ and 4th in throws attempted 40+ yards. You’re still trying to paint him in the same light you did the year he was drafted and he just isn’t that guy.

                Good read on how Goff developed playing in the system and reading defenses here if you are interested.


              13. Jimmy Garoppolo is better than Goff and Cousins by a wide margin. Jimmy G had half the weapons than those 2 guys did. Its no contest that the 49ers have the best quarterback moving forward.

        2. I just really want to know why people really want JG. Its not like we are talking about getting a Hoyer type QB, it Cousins. Like all the examples given as to why the 49ers should get Cousins, he’s a top 10 QB last few years, probably would take less money that JG, knows the system better, 49ers would be able to get extra picks, Shanny knows him and also Lynch has already said he would use JG as trade bait this offseason. So what does JG bring, he’s younger and is 7-0 as a starter that’s it. Most of the team is young and will probably be getting more new faces and I doubt they would complain about playing with a top 10 QB in Cousins.

  13. You are NUTS. I would gladly give 3 number draft picks for a great franchise quarterback. JIMMY is great with huge upside. Baring no injury, 49ers will win Super bowls with Jimmy G. Freaking nuts…… nuts

  14. What would Walsh think of Garoppolo?

    “To become a great quarterback, there must be instincts and intuition.”

    “a quarterback must have physical, mental, emotional and instinctive traits”

    “Now, he must be courageous and intensely competitive. He will be the one on the field who is running the team.”

    “Good passing has to do with accuracy, timing, and throwing a ball with touch so it is catchable.”

    “A quick delivery, one that is not telegraphed to help the defense”

    “Touch is important”

    “The ability to read defenses”

    “Mobility and an ability to avoid a pass rush”

    “The single trait that separates great quarterbacks from good quarterbacks is the ability to make the great, spontaneous decision, especially at a crucial time.”

    Jimmy checks all of those boxes.

    1. Apparently Tom Brady didn’t check all those boxes for Walsh though.
      Even the greats miss a few.

    1. UC,
      I tend to agree.
      All Grant is doing here is presenting an option that the FO can use as a chip if needed.
      Now I’d rather have JGQ wrapped up long term, but if Yee pushes a deal that makes no sense and only leaves the 49ers holding the short end of the stick then having a bargaining chip gives the team some weight.

      Personally, I don’t believe that a trade for Cousins ever gets off the ground because teams like the Browns, Jets, and Cardinals will be knocking on Cousins’ door to make a deal.

      Garoppolo will be our QB next year either short or long term depending on contract agreements.
      But that said, ain’t nothing wrong with Grant presenting an (as you say) out of the box proposition.

    1. Yup. Something like…
      Lynch: Jimmy, we want you long term. We think you an are ideal fit here. But we need to know if you are on board so we can properly plan our draft. We either sign you to a long term deal, or trade you to recover our lost draft pick.

      Lynch: Jimmy, to be clear, we want you to be a Niner for life. That’s our overwhelming number one choice. Trading you is not what we want. But if you don’t want to be here long term, please let us know now, and your preferred team to conduct a sign-n-trade. We will give Don permission to contact that team.

      1. Yea, let’s piss him off. Dumb idea. It seems this is a case where the student isn’t much of a historian.

        1. Certainly dumb if done in an overt, threatening “do this or else” way. But I can see a friendly negotiation using strategic transparency. Something like “…Jimmy, these our are options. Option 1 is making you a 49er for the next several years. This is by far our primary goal. A distant second is Option 2 (which we don’t want), which…”

          That said, I full expect (and hope for) the 49ers signing Garoppolo to a long term deal. I’d be stunned if there was any kind of trade.

          1. I think Carmen Policy summed it up nicely on how to proceed, and he’s got more experience than myself, you, Grant and Rocket combined….

            1. Can Carmen Policy pot 700 bare root roses into 5 gallon buckets on a weekend?
              Can he use 49er blogs as a relationship substitute with only minimal behavioral health medication like I can?
              Can he “bald with dignity?”

              What did Carmen Policy recommend? Something crazy like “patiently communicating with Don Yee without putting pressure on him” or “avoid negotiating through the media” or “present offers as win/win situations?”

              1. “If I were representing the team I would enter the room and bring a large jar of Vaseline and I’d say to Jimmy’s agent I’m a nice guy, I really want to do the right thing, please be gentle with me.”

          2. Of course Cousins’ new found availability will find its way into the 49ers’ negotiations with Jimmy G. The 49ers now have a viable 2nd option, and would be foolish not to leverage it in their negotiations. It has nothing to do with “pissing Jimmy off”. It’s the way of professional sports. Jimmy is a grown up. He’s been around the league long enough to understand that the NFL is a business. I’m not suggesting that the 49ers take the “take-it-or-leave-it” approach to negotiating Jimmy’s contract now that Cousins is a viable option, but they would be foolish to take it off the table, and I am certain Jimmy is mature enough to understand this. The 49ers have to do what’s best for the organization first. And getting Jimmy at the best price possible is what’s best for the 49ers ….. period.

            In the end I expect Jimmy will accept a “fair” deal. He’s found himself a fantastic opportunity in Santa Clara. He has an opportunity to play with one of the NFL’s best offensive minds. He has a GM who treats players with respect. He’s already won over the support of the fans. And the 49ers can afford to pay him a lot of money with enough left over to continue to build the roster around him, and sustain success over the coming years.

            That said, Cousins in no slouch, and I think Kyle feels like he can win a championship with Cousins at the helm. If Jimmy expects the 49ers to overpay him, the 49ers shouldn’t simply roll over and write him a blank check. And if, for whatever reason, Jimmy doesn’t want to sign a long term deal with the 49ers, then why wouldn’t the 49ers tag & trade him now, while his stock is at its peak?

            1. Lol, of course. Not! When you’re engaged, you don’t use an ex girlfriend as leverage for a cheaper wedding. It’s not only tacky, shows you have no class, but when she tells you the weddings off, you’re stuck with your ex. Haven’t you learned anything from Snyder?

              1. Apples and oranges Razor.

                NFL football isn’t analogis to a loving relationship. However, if you are into signing your lover(s) to long term contracts, with tens of millions in guaranteed money, more power to you.

                I’ve personally never felt the need to overpay for companionship, but that’s me.

            2. To clarify, I think Garoppolo has a higher ceiling than Cousins. It’s too early to know for certain, but Jimmy G. looks like a special player. Given a choice, I’d take Jimmy over Kirk, without hesitation. But there’s a limit to what I would pay for Jimmy. He’s only started 7 NFL games. And if he doesn’t want to be a Niner for the next 5 years, and another team is willing to fork over a king’s ransom for his services, so be it!

              1. Any ideas on why a team would be willing to fork over a king’s ransom after only 7 NFL starts for Jimmy?

              2. You’re completely missing the point Razor, but I’ll opine. Garoppolo is 7-0 as a starter, including 5-0 leading a young, inexperienced team. He’s young, and he’s talented. ADDITIONALLY, he’s eligible for a first-time franchise tag.

                If there isn’t a team willing to give the 49ers a king’s ransom, then the entire premise is moot.

                My point is two fold.

                A) Leverage is always a factor in negotiations. I don’t know how much money Jimmy is asking for, but I do know that, if Jimmy feels like he has the 49ers over a barrel so to speak, he’s likely to leverage that fact for a premium contract. Enter Kirk Cousins. Kyle’s father Mike had this to say about Cousins: “There’s no question in my mind that he’s a special player. If you don’t think he’s a special player, that means you don’t watch him practice very often.” All the reporting I’ve read suggests that Kyle feels the same way as his father about Cousins. I think Kyle feels like he can win a championship with Kirk. If that’s the case, and Jimmy is asking for more money than what the 49ers feel is reasonable for a player with 7 NFL starts under his belt, why in the world wouldn’t they consider Cousins IF (and this brings me to my 2nd point)

                B) There is another team willing to fork over a king’s ransom for Jimmy Garoppolo, who is eligible for a first-time franchise tag. This fact always gave the 49ers a viable “out” if they felt that they couldn’t convince Jimmy to sign a long term deal with the Niners, and it made the trade with the Patriots a no brainer from the 49ers stand point. In fact, it’s the only thing that gave the 49ers some leverage. I don’t know if there is a team out there that is willing to give the 49ers 2 first round picks for Garoppolo (at a minimum), but IF there is, and Jimmy doesn’t want to sign a long term deal, and IF Cousins would like to reunite with Kyle, it would be a dereliction of duty if the 49ers didn’t at least consider it as an option.

                Anytime a starting NFL QB hits the open market, it naturally effects the QB market (meaning Jimmy G’s market). Even more so when that starting QB already has established a relationship with the Head Coach of one of the teams who are in the process of securing their franchise QB. ShanaLynch shouldn’t, and almost certainly won’t, simply roll over and hand Jimmy a blank check. Personally speaking, I prefer Garoppolo over Cousins, but only IF he wants to be here long term, and only if he isn’t going to ask the 49ers to pay him more than ShanaLynch feel he is worth. And Cousins, for the moment, gives the 49ers a little more leverage in contract negotiations with Jimmy, and only a fool would ignore this.

              3. This week, NFL1000 quarterbacks scout Mark Schofield ranked the NFL’s top quarterbacks of 2017 in a feature for Bleacher Report. The ranking is based on accuracy, arm talent, ability while under pressure, decision-making skills, and position value.

                Here are the 12 quarterbacks whom Schofield believes were better than Jimmy Garoppolo in 2017:

                1) Tom Brady, Patriots
                2) Aaron Rodgers, Packers
                3) Russell Wilson, Seahawks
                4) Drew Brees, Saints
                5) Ben Roethlisberger, Steelers
                6) Matthew Stafford, Lions
                7) Carson Wentz, Eagles
                8) Cam Newton, Panthers
                9) Jared Goff, Rams
                10) Case Keenum, Vikings
                11) Matt Ryan, Falcons
                12) Kirk Cousins, Redskins

                *Note: Kirk Cousins ranked one spot ahead of Jimmy G.

                While Garoppolo came in ranked at No. 13, Schofield noted that he spent December “looking like the best signal-caller in the league.” The red-hot 49ers were the only NFL team that went undefeated during the final month of the season.

  15. A bird in the hand, Grant. If there was more reason to be worried about Garappolo’s continued success then I’d consider the idea more but even you say, “I’m not saying Cousins is a better quarterback than Garoppolo.” Given the possibility that we could get little to nothing from the draft picks gained I’d say we’re better off holding onto JG.

  16. well that was certainly an outrageous plan Grant has put forth.

    It sounds absurd at first. But strictly from an asset management standpoint it makes lots of sense. For sake of argument, let’s say the differences between Garappolo and Cousins aren’t too significant at this point. I guess it depends on how you view the coming Free Agent market. Because what Grant is proposing is essentially turning a good chunk of the cap space into a couple of high round draft picks instead of signing some high priced free agents.

    But back in the real world, unless the Niners believe that Garoppolo is a lost cause as a long term solution (either due to development or their ability to sign him longterm)…then it would be a P.R. nightmare along with very difficult on the team’s psyche as the momentum and confidence they built in the last 5 games of the season was with Garoppolo. You risk losing that. It’s intangible…the confidence and team cohesion. But it is highly valuable. Sure winning cures theses things immediately…but it takes time to build that stuff back up in training camp and the preseason. So I just don’t see such a crazy personnel gambit being very likely . Again, from strictly an asset management standpoint (leaving out the real world team football stuff), Grant’s idea has merit.

    1. The Browns under Brown would make this trade, but as you imply organizations that know how to win would know better. Let’s hope our team is now a winning organization.

    2. “it would be a P.R. nightmare along with very difficult on the team’s psyche as the momentum and confidence they built in the last 5 games of the season was with Garoppolo. You risk losing that. It’s intangible…the confidence and team cohesion. But it is highly valuable.”

      True, but not as valuable as Cousins plus all those high draft picks Garoppolo would bring in a trade.

      1. Kirk Cousins is the biggest choker in the nfl. I wish the Redskins signed him for 200 million so my Cowboys can have two gauranteed wins a year!

        Skip Bayless

      2. you’d blow up the team cohesion with Garoppolo and have to rebuild it with Cousins. Not impossible but difficult and risky.

        But the biggest thing you have to consider to make your plan work is getting Garoppolo on board. He could simply refuse to play along. Because remember no team would want to trade for him under these circumstances unless he agreed to an extension. The Nienrs got him from the Patriots and were willing to take him without an extension in place because Garappolo wanted out of New England so he could start and of all the places he could go the Niners were a fairly desirable place. But if you pss off Jimmy G he may say to heck with it, refuse to sign an extension, threaten to hold out and not sign the Franchise Tag and dare the Niners to eat their high 2nd round pick until he gets into Free Agency.

        1. Garoppolo has been here three months. Cousins has a proven history players are the league are familiar with. Von Miller is publicly campaigning for the Broncos to sign him. I’m sure the 49ers players would warm up to Cousins.

          1. Why wouldn’t Miller campaign for Cousins? Lynch is more interested in video games than real football. You keep pointing out Jimmy’s 7 starts as if it strengthens your case for Cousins, when in reality it bolsters the case for Jimmy. 2017 was his baseline performance, whereas Cousins has hit his ceiling….

            1. How do you know Cousins has hit his ceiling? He’s played on a poor team for 3 years and still performed at a very high level. Put him with a more talented team and there is likely a lot more room to improve.

              1. I’m sure we could bring up some posts from you about Cousins before Garoppolo was acquired that would contradict your view here today.

              2. No it wouldn’t. I’ve had him ranked #12, and that’s as high as he’ll get unless he stops by Foster’s place. Jimmy is better, and could be top 5 when all is said and done….

              3. Lol. I’m not going to take the time to go back and bring them up, but you would be very embarrassed if I did.

              4. I’m not going there Razor. That would lead to another hurt feelings situation and I have no desire to do that with you again. We often see things fairly close in regards to this team but don’t this time. Let’s leave it at that.

          2. This Niners team won 5 games in a row with Garropolo after a miserable 1-10 showing. So I’d call his time with the Niners more significant than simply “three months”.

            I’m sure many of the Niners would eventually warm to Cousins. They’re professionals. And winning cures all. But you’d also build a healthy amount of distrust between the players and management if they saw how quickly the team moved on from Garoppolo. The Niners have barely started rehab their franchise image in the front office with John Lynch’s boy scout image. A move like this would undo much of their efforts they’ve put into rebuilding the confidence between them and their players and the rest of the league.

          3. The locker room would be fine with Cousins. He’s a high character guy and as we have seen is very well liked around the league with players lobbying for their teams to sign him. The Niners love Garoppolo, but ultimately the players know it’s a business and as long as you aren’t throwing away a chance to win they would be on board pretty quickly.

            1. as I said, I’m sure most players would eventually be fine with Cousins. But they would not be happy with it initially. It would take time to build that on field confidence and chemistry. But the players on the team as well as around the league would probably take note of such a quick change of personnel direction on Garoppolo. It’s not that the players would be unhappy with Cousins…but more so unhappy with how the front office handled things.

              1. I don’t disagree with you on how the players may feel initially, but if a scenario like the one Grant proposed ever came up, no one would fault the 49ers for taking it even the players.

              2. @rocket

                the players would absolutely fault the 49ers organization. Teams and locker rooms are tight like families. Sure they’re professionals and would make it work. But they would certainly blame the Niners organization for any problem that arose next season because they pushed out the guy that won 5 games in a row after the team went 1-10 before he arrived.

                The Niners better go far into the playoffs and to the super bowl this season if they bring in Cousins and push out Garoppolo. Because any problems or hiccups along the way will be amplified due to the team’s decision to move on from Garoppolo. Until the team consistently wins with Cousins (and they probably would…but not likely without some obstacles), there’s little margin for error in terms of team chemistry dealing with adversity.

          4. He has a proven history… But… Some of that history isn’t exactly ‘arrows up.’ For example, he became the full-time starter in 2015. That was his best year. Then next year, 2016, it went down. And then it went down again in 2017.

            We’ve seen that before. Rather recently. Early peak, steady decline.

            Also, if he as any sand in his britches, he’s going to go to the Vikings or the Broncos. Both of those teams are a QB away from the Super Bowl. The 49ers are a whole bunch of pieces away from the Super Bowl.

            1. The drop was minimal from year one to year too and he improved in YPA and overall yards while finishing 7th overall in QB rating and 6th in QBR. This season there was a drop, but considering he was playing with new receivers and without his top option for most of the season, that is understandable. Never mind playing behind an Oline that started 4 backups for a few games. The drop still placed him in the top ten in a few categories. He’s not Kap if that is what you are trying to infer here.

    3. What cap space do they need to sign high draft picks??? The rookie salary cap MANDATES that the no. 1 overall pick gets $5,855,200 his first year and the no. 2 pick gets $5,238,800. The 49ers have roughly $115 million in cap space for 2018. That is over TEN TIMES what the first two picks will receive COMBINED.

      The differences between Garoppolo and Cousins are huge. Try about a 5% difference in completion percentage and Garoppolo has the highest QB rating under pressure in the NFL. He’s also 4 years younger.

      Cousins has hit his ceiling, Garoppolo is still on the way up, and just like Young, he doesn’t want to be only remembered as “that guy that backed up Brady”.

      1. the cap space is not about signing the draft picks. The cap space would be needed to franchise Garoppolo before trading him. you’re exchanging $24M for some high draft picks.

  17. Grant, put down the crack pipe! I know you’re trying to get attention (hey, boss, look how many replies my idiotic article got!), but let’s get real. Garoppolo was the highest rated QB in the NFL under pressure, yes, even ahead of Brady. Maybe you’ve forgotten that he shredded Jacksonville to the tune of 44 points, while Brady barely escaped. Cousins has seen his TD% drop over the last three years, his INT% rise, his QB rating decline, and his numbers, despite the fact that the Redskins had the best pass protection in football, don’t match Garoppolo. Garoppolo’s completion percentage is roughly 5% higher behind an inferior line, no true no. 1 WR, and no running game.

    The 49ers could not trade Garoppolo for the same reason that the Patriots had to hurry up and unload him while they still could. Teams are not going to give up anything on a free agent. Sure the 49ers could slap the franchise tag on him, but how well did that work out in Washington? Same scenario here.


  18. Grant:

    I don’t buy your argument that Cousins knows the offense better. He may have had more exposure to it, but it’s been quite some time; he will need to get reaccustomed to it and probably relearn some if not most of the language. Jimmy showed an amazing ability to pick up the offense in the short time he was exposed to it. I would bet that by the start of the 2018 preseason, Jimmy G and Kirk Cousins would have approximately an equal command of the offense.

    1. It’s funny you mention that, Cubus. I said all along that this year would be Jimmy’s baseline performance.

      1. #49ers with Garoppolo led the #NFL in points-per-drive, even though they had the highest FG-to-TD rate in the league. How? The Niners scored on an outlandish 62% of Garoppolo’s drives.

        Pretty good baseline, am I right?

    2. Cubus,

      Cousins has played in a system similar to Shanahan’s for his entire career. He would definitely have a better grasp on it than Garoppolo.

      1. Cousins has played in a system similar to Shanahan’s for his entire career.

        Yet, Jimmy has performed better with only 3 months experience. Go figure.

        1. No he didn’t actually. His TD-ratio was nowhere near as good as Cousins, his QB rating was worse than Cousins first two seasons as well. This is what I’m talking about in regards to the worship of Garoppolo that has taken hold of this board.

          1. Not sure what you’re talking about. With only 6 games under Shanny, Jimmy had a 62% scoring rate per offensive drive. It seems you’re backseat driving, and your hands ain’t on the wheel….

            1. I’m not sure what the Skins averaged in that category but we are talking about QB comparisons not offense comparisons. There are a lot of factors involved with an offense scoring that don’t come down to QB play.

              1. Rocket is talking about the stellar Niners running game and the offensive line that produced it.

              2. rib,

                The Niner running game was better than Washington’s. The Skins were also starting backups on the Oline for a good part of the season.

              3. Jimmy Garoppolo had less than a month to learn a new offense and build chemistry and this rocket guy is saying Cousins is better? No chance. 5 wins in a row says it all.

          2. All Jimmy G does is win.
            Once QB rating / QBR / TD ratio etc. are in the range of good-to-very-good, they are no match to the eye test.
            My eye test says that Cousins is a franchise-level-QB who has plateaued. Eye test says Jimmy G is HoF potential QB who has scratched the surface.

            1. And you are entitled to that opinion Mood. I don’t see a big gap if any between the two. We’ll see how it works out.

              1. Rocket,
                To be honest, I don’t play the GM game because I think I understand very little football compared to Niners front office. If Shanny prefers Cousins to Jimmy G, I’m cool. But from what I have seen of Jimmy G and Cousins in game situations (especially in fourth quarter), and also how the team mates of each QB feel about their leader, my money is on Jimmy G. It’s interesting that I have not noticed any Washington player openly lobby for re-signing Cousins. Maybe I missed it.

              2. Mood,

                I don’t claim to know as much as people paid to do this either and I agree with you that Garoppolo looks special. My point on Cousins has simply been that I think people overlook him and ignore the obvious elite traits he has for whatever reason. This is a guy who has fought for everything he has ever achieved and plays with a chip on his shoulder. He’s also obsessed with doing everything possible to improve his performance. I like these kinds of players and I think Cousins is going to make some of these people who are disrespecting him look very foolish.

                This is a great read if you want to learn more about him:


                As far as how his teammates feel about him, the reactions by some of the Redskins on twitter weren’t all that favorable to the trade and teammates have backed Cousins and stated he’s a leader in the past so I don’t think there are any issues as to how good of a teammate he is.

      2. “He would definitely have a better grasp on it than Garoppolo.”

        At what point in time, Rocket? Notice that I didn’t say now, I said by the start of the 2018 preseason, and I could extend that to the beginning of the season. Everyone says that learning Kyle Shanahan’s offense is liking learning a new language. By that they mean a foreign language. If you don’t regularly practice a foreign language, it’s amazing how quickly you forget especially when it comes to speaking (by that I mean saying sentences the way native speakers do and not simply a word for word translation from english). What makes you think Cousins remembers everything especially the complex play calling?

        1. He played for McVay who uses a number of the same things Shanahan does including the design and verbiage. It didn’t change this year under Gruden so his transition to Shanahan’s system would be seamless.

          1. Do you know of any articles that backup the idea that Gruden uses the same terminology as Shanahan?

            1. Cubus,

              Shanahan, Gruden and McVay are all running similar systems. They may have subtle differences here and there, but they are all based on the Walsh WCO. They are also linked on the Coaching tree. Kyle worked for Jon Gruden and his father who worked for the 49ers, McVay worked for Kyle, Jay Gruden worked for Jon, Jon worked for Mike Holmgren who worked for Walsh,

              Cousins has been playing in the WCO his entire career and it wouldn’t take long to get back up to speed in Kyle’s version of it.

              1. I agree it wouldn’t take long, but I maintain that by the start of the 2018 season they both would have a comparable command of Shanahan’s offense. Jimmy has shown that he is a quick learner and there’s no reason to think he won’t be able to pick up the lion’s share of the offense by the start of the season. My point is that I don’t believe either one has an advantage over the other in this particular aspect.

  19. The news cycle must be really slow. Am I nuts or does that article read like Seb wrote it. Hmmm…….. Interesting. Regardless, it’s not going to happen. Cousins is the most overpaid, overhyped, overrated QB in the history of the NFL. What has he done? Yea, I know, what has Jimmy done? Nothing yet, but at least we can say YET. With Cousins, we already know the answer. Nothing. Squat. Zero. Zilch. That is the only stat that counts. That move sounds more like a dumb move Cleveland, or better yet someone not actually IN football would make, not Lynch and Shanny. Jimmy G. will be our QB next year, and for many years after that.

    1. Also, it would likely take up way too much webspace and use $0.02 words in the wrong context.

      …plus it might inadvertently have his home address in it, no doubt due to his “wife” having written the piece. He’d then post several follow up articles on why he would stay but his wife wants him to move somewhere safer….Cuba!

      1. !Habana!
        Hahahaha. Aaiiyii – Carumba!
        (Enterprising souls who care to do the research might have fun discovering the story of the derivation of his town’s name. The ‘under seige’ aspect reflects ironically upon his own storyline.)

  20. the basis of the article is Cousins is equal to Jimmy G. This is inaccurate just based on age alone. However, I actually think Jimmy G is a better QB than Kirk.
    Draft choices are important, but they are not a guarantee of success, the failure rate is pretty high.
    The article is good click bait while we wait to get to the draft.

    1. That’s kind of deniable. The Redskins would rather have Alex because of a personal vendetta against Cousins, not because they think Alex is the better QB. They may think that but the vendetta is the main reason Kirk is not there.

      But yes, trading Jimmy and signing Kirk is insane.

      1. The Redskins would rather have Alex because of a personal vendetta against Cousins, not because they think Alex is the better QB.

        That falls in line with Grant’s conspiracy theory articles Grant has been spinning lately. It literally gets slaughtered by the fact that the previous Washington GM Scot McCloughan stated recently that while Cousins was a good QB, he saw nothing special about him.

  21. The Redskins didn’t want to give Kirk Cousins 19 million a year but were willing to give Alex Smith 23.5 million a year lol

      1. Interestingly enough, Alex Smith and Kirk Cousins have virtually identical passer-profiles.

        Alex is more athletic and adds a running dimensions Cousins lacks.
        Alex throws fewer INTs.
        Alex has had two seasons better than Cousin’s 2015 peak.
        Alex is the #6 playoff passer in the NF (two points behind Aaron Rodgers, two points ahead of Joe Montana).

        Which shows justs how ****ing stupid people who blame Smith for his teams losing in the playoffs are… He’s just one of the most snake-bit playoff QBs in the NFL. Very much like Steve Young and Dan Fouts. Two HOF QBs with one SuperBowl between them. Not saying Smith is a HOF QB because there is at least one Jack-*** here that will put those words in my mouth in order to attack me some time in the future.

        And while he’s not as good under pressure as Cousins (who is one of the best under pressure) he’s certainly no Derek Carr:

        Only DeShone Kizer (35.6) and Trevor Siemian (37.8) have worse passer ratings while under pressure than Derek Carr (39.9).

    1. The Redskins have been trying to re-sign Cousins for two years and would have paid him as much or more than they wound up giving Smith. Cousins didn’t want to re-sign there which forced their hand. Their choices were franchise him a 3rd time for 34 mill or find another option. They couldn’t keep him at that number so they went to plan B. This belief by a few of you on here that the Skins chose Smith over Cousins is laugh out loud funny and has no speck of truth to it.

      1. so according to your logic……Cousins didn’t want to re-sign but was ok signing the franchise tag TWICE… what point did he realize he didn’t want to re-sign with the redskins?

        he could have held out or demanded a trade ……..if you heard news of this please share with us…..

        Bro – WAKE UP – they did chose Alex over him……its the truth……you just don’t let go a player you drafted-groomed and franchised TWICE – because of a couple of $$……..not only that they gave up a 3rd rd pick and a solid corner……

        ….must be they came to their senses the guy is not worth the money he is asking for……meaning he is mediocre and not a franchise QB

        1. You really don’t have a clue what is happening around the league do you? You honestly had no idea Cousins was a top ten QB until I provided the stats for you and now you honestly have no idea that Cousins has refused to sign a long term deal with the Redskins because of the front office. It’s common knowledge and has been for awhile:

          On May 2nd, right after the draft, we made Kirk an offer that included the highest fully guaranteed amount upon signing for a quarterback in NFL history ($53 million) and guaranteed a total of $72 million for injury. The deal would have made him at least the second highest-paid player by average per year in NFL history.
          But despite our repeated attempts, we have not received any offer from Kirk’s agent this year.
          Kirk has made it clear that he prefers to play on a year-to-year basis. While we would have liked to work out a long-term contract before this season, we accept his decision.

          Seriously, stop posting nonsense that you haven’t done any research on. It makes you look like a fool.

          1. makes your argument even worse….talk about character – not only was he mediocre on the field – he was dumb in the office……so if he didn’t like the Redskins why did he sign the Franchise Tag?……..remember he signed it TWICE

            Why didn’t he hold out – like the steelers RB and the Rams DT – to show his displeasure in him being tagged?

            1. Smh. He signed the tags because they guaranteed him a lot of money and there were no other options. The Franchise tag is there to restrict the player and it did. The only thing they can do is play under the tag and hopefully get to URFA healthy which is what Cousins did. You really shouldn’t be talking about things you don’t understand. It’s a waste of my time to continually have to post things for you.

          2. if i was mediocre I would play on a year to year basis also…….I agree that was smart………more money for mediocre play……..

            Maybe the Redskins had some “if you suck, you get less” language in the contract……..I won’t be shocked if they did……

              1. Onelame calling cousins mediocre…
                And Alex F’ing Smith a “cold blooded assassin.

                Oneame you love to pop off, and ride others jock to become relevant on this page. You haven’t changed a bit.
                Let’s see how much more money that “mediocre” qb makes over your dreamboat.
                Washington definitely Downgraded.
                Can’t wait to hear the excuses when he sucks and the Redskins fans are calling for his departure next. Like SF and KC fans have.

                Alex smith is the Poster boy for mediocre!
                You’re a joke Onelame

  22. Good grief. What is with the conspiracy theory crap here in your last two articles Grant? You’re a better writer than this.

  23. The Niners should bring back Kapernick
    and design their offense around his skills.
    His price tag would be low and they could use
    the extra money to purchase better players
    in free agency. That coupled with trading the
    overrated Jimmy G would give the team
    even more great players. Let’s not forget that Kap led them to the Super Bowl. He’s a well rested hidden gem.

  24. Grant really is trying hard… probably too hard.
    I’d give him credit for trying… I was thinking why would a typical beat writer try so hard to get some clicks… it obviously worked, otherwise people wouldn’t have clicked. I looked up how much a sports beat writer would make in general, and I found this old article written in year 2013… sure it’s 2018 now, so the figures are probably a bit more…

    i also know that there are many beat writers covering the 49ers in the Bay Area; some are columnists for various publications, and others are just bloggers on the internet… It’s a very competitive market… all want to get your clicks.

  25. I find it amazing that Grant makes excuses for Cousins but seems to be rather critical of JG, who won 5 games in a row including Tennessee and Jacksonville playing behind, according to Grant himself, an offensive line so horrid that “blowing it up” would be the only answer along with injuries at other offensive positions. Meanwhile, poor, poor little Kirky had to play without some of his best players. Awww, poor baby. If only. It’s a very simple equation. Alex is better than Kirk. Jimmy is better than Alex. Good luck in New York Kirky.

  26. The moral of the story. Your not going to get rich being a sports writer, columnist, or sports blogger, no more than you would being a checker at the local supermarket. They both make about the same. I assume the writer can work from home so that’s a plus. As Bill Murray said in Caddy Shack, “I got that going for me”!

  27. Scott Mccloughan wrote the paragraph on cousins. He’s hit his ceiling, and if the pieces are not perfect around him, he will not get u anywhere in this league. Aside from 1st round playoff losses. It’s exactly why he didn’t want to pay Kirk, and a big reason why he lost his job. Crazy thing is, the Redskins finally realized what Scott was talking about. Heck they chose Alex Smith over Kirk. Enough said. I don’t care what u throw at the Niners, no way do they trade Jimmy for Kirk and hope. Because that’s what your getting, hope, that every draft pick u get, you hit on. Or hope Kirk can get u out of the 1st round. I’m sticking with Jimmy. Grant, Rocket, you guys can take Kirk, bet I’ll have a longer season, every time.

    1. Steel… the sad part is you really believe they chose Smith over Cousins.
      Cousins >Smith. It’s really that simple!
      No need in fighting about
      The 1st ranked 2nd tier Qb vs a 1st ranked 3rd tier qb.

      Because we all know Washington NEVER overlays mediocre players past their prime. ?

      1. It is sad because they did choose Smith over cousins. Otherwise they would ha e paid him 2 years ago. Mediocre gets you 71 mil, cousins is just a little better and he will get around the same amount. So Wash chose Smith. To them, he’s the same player but cheaper. My biggest point, if kirk was the QB those last 5 games, would this team ha e been 5-0? Even though he knows the entire playbook grant says. My opinion is no way we win those last 5 games. Jimmy made this team believe in themselves, they fought for him. The only person Kirk makes better is Kirk. Nobody is fighting for him.

  28. Jimmy G. had an immediate chemistry with the everyone and everyone with him. Something has been sparked, there is a feeling going on right now about the future of the team, “hope”. I think it would be a bad idea to trade Him.

  29. Kirk is slightly better than Alex Smith. I believe Jimmy has a chance to be a top 3 QB. If Jimmy makes it clear he’s not intrested in a LTD, by all means get what you can for him. But Jimmy is by far the better qb and i would much rather have him

  30. Well Grant, when I first read this article the first words that came to mind were “hair brained.” Then I remembered that I proposed this exact scenario when the 49ers signed Jimmy G. What Jimmy GQ showed between the trade and now makes this a bad idea. You NEVER trade away a guy who can be a top 5 QB in the NFL. Never ever Never ever Never ever. Cousins is descent. Garoppolo is great. I don’t care if the Browns offer the #1 and #4 and next years #1 and #2 picks. You just don’t do it. I don’t think the Smith trade to Washington changes anything between the 49ers and JimmyG. The 49ers have their QB of the future so I’m sure Lynch and Shanny are not going to screw that up. It’s the age old adage: A bird in the bush is better than the hand or something like that. Right now the 49ers have hand and they shouldn’t lose it.

          1. Baseline performance. Good point, Grant. All the more reason to expect great things from Jimmy in 2018.

          2. My response was a bit tongue in cheek. We have 7 NFL games worth of film on Garoppolo. We have a few seasons worth of film on Cousins. From what I have seen with my own 2 eyes, is that Jimmy G is a much better QB than Cousins and it isn’t close. Cousins worked with 2 of the best offensive young minds in the NFL and he turned in good seasons. Jimmy G was traded and had 3 weeks (no offseason) and he was absolutely fantastic in Shanahan’s offense given his limited time learning it. Add an offseason to Jimmy’s learning process and this guy could be an NFL MVP IMO. Kirk Cousins will never play at that level. Jimmy makes quicker decisions, he’s more accurate, and his release is laser fast. The guy has all the tools to win a Super Bowl. Kirk cousins has been uneven in his performances throughout his career. He strings together a few good games followed by bad games. We didn’t see that with Jimmy G. He was consistent in his performance. Jimmy is a great leader in the locker room and he sets a standard with his work ethic. IMO there is no debate here. Jimmy G must be the QB of the future. Cousins can come to the 49ers if he wants to be the backup but other than that this is Jimmy Garoppolo’s team.

              1. That was meant for Grant. He seemed to be insinuating 7 NFL games in which a QB goes 7-0 and scores at the highest rate in the NFL and leads a team who was 1-10 to 5 consecutive wins equates to that QB as being unproven. I wholeheartedly disagree. Not sure what else Garoppolo has to do to prove he’s better than Kirk Cousins. Jimmy G has been nothing short of spectacular and we have enough game film to know unequivocally Jimmy > Kirk.

              2. I know man. Grant inadvertently refutes his own point by continuing to bring that up. As I’ve said for many months, and over and over on this thread, 2017 was Jimmy’s baseline performance. Cousins’ head is up against the ceiling….

              3. Grant Cohn says:
                February 1, 2018 at 9:49 am
                It’s called a small sample.

                Is that what your girlfriend told you? ;>)

            1. You nailed it, Houston. It WAS a small sample size, no doubt. But what he did with that opportunity was so impressive that it outweighs the argument. I hope he’s our QB for the next 10 years.

          1. It’s just mind-boggling — Niners with Jimmy G led the NFL in points-per-drive, despite having the highest FG-to-TD rate in the league.

    1. It never ceases to amaze me how quickly people grab on to a player and believe he is the greatest thing ever. Garoppolo is a very good player there is no question about it, but the worship going on here is out of control. While he definitely moved the ball, he had a 7-5 TD to Int ratio which is not franchise quality. In 3 of the wins he played in the defense held the opposition to a combined total of 43 points. As good as Garoppolo played, we had seen a similar performance from Beathard two weeks before JG got the job. Against the Giants Beathard was 19-25 for 288 yards and two TD passes so it’s not like the offense had been garbage before Garoppolo. They were improving as the season wore on.

      I like Garoppolo, and I think he’s going to be the long term starter for us, but good gravy the hero worship going on in here is out of control. To believe he’s so much better than a guy like Cousins who has been a top ten QB for 3 years is tunnel vision fandom.

      I think we’ve also lost track of the scenario Grant was proposing. It was not a trade of Garoppolo for Cousins. It was Cousins and multiple high picks for Garoppolo. It likely has no chance of happening for various reasons, but that is a hell of a return for a guy with 7 career starts and a 7-5 TD-Int ratio.

      1. Your obsession with Cousins is WORSE… least we saw what JimmyG could do and we base the strong believe in him on what we saw…..

        Go back and read the blog, not everyone was on the JimmyG boat when he first arrived…………then it was “don’t play him yet”………when he played and people saw his game, was when most jumped on the boat……….what else do you need from us to form an opinion?

        We’ve all seen Cousins and are consistently saying he is mediocre……nothing has changed ……..even the Redskins AGREE with us……….or do you know Cousins better than the Redskins?

        Please shut up with the “Cousins who has been a top ten QB for 3 years”…..if you can’t show us who else is in your top 10 ………I won’t be shocked if a raccoon is in your top ten… us your top ten QB’s you keep talking about or agree you are lost on the Cousins subject…..

        He had two pro bowl line men and still was mediocre

      2. If you can still run a 4.65 forty, Rocket, you can still catch the Jimmy caboose and get on board.

        1. I’m fully on board the Garoppolo train and have been since he was acquired. I just don’t worship him and can see a deal like the one proposed by Grant would be a much better scenario for the Niners and their long term plans.

          1. nobody is worshiping him……All we are saying is Thank God we have a chance…….especially after what we have been through…….but to dismiss our passion and act like you know better than us… plain dumb and childish…

            …we all have the same information you have…….no one here is going to bet their life savings JimmyG will take us to the SB or even playoffs…..but it is nice to believe we can reach the big games with him………

            and because we don’t like Cousins — is on you……if we were all happy Cousins was our QB you won’t think worshiping a mediocre Cousins was a problem…..

            1. oneniner says:
              February 1, 2018 at 11:17 am
              nobody is worshiping him……All we are saying is Thank God we have a chance…….especially after what we have been through…….but to dismiss our passion and act like you know better than us… plain

              Says the guy who would jump ship if Cousins was a Niner. Like he did when Smith got his walking papers.
              Save that garbage Onelame. You ain’t NO real fan! Typical fair weather. Get real!

          2. Rocket,
            We Niners fans have kissed a lot QB frogs since Garcia left. Most of us have seen enough of Prince Charming and priced him at a value no GM in his right mind would trade for……. and Al Davis is dead.

          3. Worship him…lmao. Nothing like exaggeration elixir, eh Rocket? Tell the truth. We know you’ve got that Cousins altar down in your mancave…lol.

            1. I saw Cousins as an obvious target for Shanny as did you, if he got to UFA. I also like Garoppolo very much and am fully on board with him as the future. If I had a choice between Cousins and high draft picks or Garoppolo, I would take Cousins and the high picks. That simple.

              1. Yep, I was fully on board getting Cousins, but that was because I never truly believed in my heart of hearts that BB would let Jimmy go. I would not entertain any offers for trading Jimmy, after having seen him play, no matter the compensation in addition to Cousins. I’m ready to win championships, and that’s the trajectory that I feel this team is on. Any action that could put that trajectory at risk is not something I’m interested in….

      3. It never ceases to amaze me how people can see greatness with their own eyes without being able to recognize it. Jimmy G is the love child of Joe Montana, Tom Brady, and Serena Williams. He is the NFL equivalent of 2012 Johnny Football. The man is unstoppable and he is the greatest thing since the founding of Twin Peaks. Get on board Rocket or we won’t let you celebrate the 49ers 2019 Superbowl victory with us.

      4. Rocket, they may turn on him as quickly as they elevate him now. I’m amazed at how often that happens here. Coaches (Harbaugh great to nothing special), GMs (in Baalke we Trust-need I say more), players (Bowman being the latest example).

        I like JG and have been very favorably impressed, though there are some areas of concern for me. I still think that the team won’t make a serious run at Cousins but it behooves them to kick the tires (like they did with Manning).

        1. Harbaugh led a great turn around. Then he couldn’t win the big one. Then he went 8-8. It’s debatable as to how much blame JH should get.

          Baalke incorrectly got credit by using McCloughan’s draft board.

          Bowman was never the same after his knee injury. He was was even worse after the achilles injury.

          The fans turning on these three was performance based. Nothing wrong with that.

        2. EC,

          You are so right. I had the audacity to say Cousins and multiple high draft picks were a better option than Lord Jimmy and look at the response. Like Mother Bears protecting cubs.

          I’ve always liked Garoppolo, and I’m glad he’s our QB, but holy smokes you’d think the love child of Montana and Young just floated into Santa Clara.

          1. I just think it’s a dumb idea. We’ve got a guy with rare traits, and momentum going into next year. He’s got a cathedral ceiling. Has nothing to do with cute exemplifications, worship, or copulation….

          2. When you have not had a quarter back on your team for over a decade, and then you get one, you don’t trade or sign someone else. That’s just smart.

  31. In my opinion there is something special about Jimmy G, something you can’t measure statistically. Cousins is a good QB but if you ask me who I want as my QB when your team is down by 5 with 2 minutes left and you have the ball on your own 20 its a no brainer. Now if the Browns were to offer 2 firsts, 2 seconds and a 3rd it would be hard to pass up. You could end up with the first pick in the draft 2 straight years but I would still pass on the deal. QB’s who along with being very good have that something special come around every 10 to 15 years. No Grant i’m going to stick with Jimmy G thank you very much.

    1. I was surprised how openly Shanalynch have expressed their admiration of how Jimmy G walked into the locker room and took over the leadership role. He just does not bring his leadership skills and superior QB skills to the table, he brings 3.5 years of deep knowledge of the Patriots’ Way that the Niners FO wants to implant in this franchise.

      1. Yep. I’m surprised how many in here are willing to jeopardize losing that culture after 20+ years adrift on a ship of fools. It’s like they want to look a gift horse in the mouth….

        1. It’s the mind playing tricks and creating delusions in the vacuum created by Jimmy G deprivation. This craziness will continue until March 6 only slightly mitigated by the combine and the few hundred mock drafts….

  32. I have to confess – I didn’t read the read because I knew it would be B.S

    From Lynch………

    We are, as I said last week, we’re working hard. These things are complicated. We feel optimistic in the discussions we’ve had with Jimmy’s side. Not gonna give a play-by-play, as I said — we agreed with Don Yee and Jimmy’s camp that we weren’t gonna give play-by-plays on this, we were gonna let it happen. But I can tell you that, we’ve had productive conversations, and remain very optimistic. I think the most important thing in a deal like this, we want Jimmy very much to be our franchise quarterback for years to come. And Jimmy wants that very much as well. To me, that makes too much sense not to happen. So we’re gonna continue working.

    1. Undercenter,
      If you are correct and JG is a better QB than Steve Young get your SB tickets for about 5 of the next 10 right now.

      1. OldCoach, I believe this kid to be special. He has all the traits necessary to become great.

  33. Grant seems to aspire to be the Stephen A. Smith of Niners beat writers but IMO his MO is more that of Skip Bayless…..

    1. Skip Bayless has built a very successful and lucrative career out of being a loudmouth jerk with nothing important to say. If you’re willing to lose your soul and go to Hell while being the most hated man in your field then by all means follow Skip’s path.

  34. Couple things about Grant’s article.

    1. The way Grant wrote the article as ‘absolute in his mind…that JG should be traded’, makes if feel like click-bait, but in reality it is a good off-season article that explores an option considering current events.

    2. The stars would have to align to make it work, meaning the draft picks we get actually materialize into blue chippers. I would not say Armstead, Solomon Thomas and even Jimmy Ward are foundation players. Further, the PR fallout if Cousins doesn’t work out and/or JG takes another team the promise land would set us back. The KS/JL era would be over.

    Good Idea Grant, but too risky. I do like Cousins. JG is younger and the unknown of where he will go from here is so intriguing I want to see it play out.

    * BONUS THOUGHT * I believe if ShannyLynch truly believed the Cousins acquisition was game changer over JG they would of not taken the trade. However, to contriduict myself, there was chatter that it is only a second round pick and they could move JG in offseason… see how it goes first. It went pretty well soooooo….. dun dun duuunnn

    GO Niners!

  35. “Smith will help the 49ers more this offseason than he ever did when he was on the team.”
    A statement like this pretty much tells you what the rest of the article is worth. I sincerely hope that this is the dumbest thing I hear or read today.

  36. Baalke is gone…amid all of the cheers, comes John Lynch as our GM to HOPEFULLY undo all of the damage 6 seasons of drafts that Baalke instituted…AJ Jenkins, Garnett, etc., and what do we get right out of the gun…? …A summer school classmate at #3 OVERALL …and a pot-smoking injury prone ILB who may or may not make the grade of the NFL….not to mention that Solomon Thomas was taken as a DLineman of which we already had several. Yes, I know that everyone on here is aware of all of this….My point is to toss a little water on Grant’s flame of trading JG for extra picks and in the process, pick up Kirk Cousins….Fact is, we (niners) are not very good at drafting. My suggestion would be to hire Scot McLoughan as a draft consultant and see what he can make of our draft situation….clever huh …?

    1. lmao……so much jokes on this page…….


      ..lets wake up Tony Morabito and John Blackinger to help us with the 2018 draft……

      Maybe they convince Cousins to be our 3rd string back up……..

  37. Is this guy freakin crazy?!?! The hardest position to fill in the NFL… the one make or break position that can define your franchise… and he wants us to take unproven picks and risk getting a dud, and a quart back in Cousins who’s a premadonna stuck up snot noise little kid who burned his bridges in Washington?!?! If Cousins was so great… why did he keep getting F-Tagged? Why did they let him go? Teams don’t just let “great” QBs walk out the door. This idea he has makes since in the fact Garropolo would be worth the picks he speaks of…. but just because he’s worth that in the trade market doesn’t mean we should do it! That would be like trading Montana after his 1 st SB! He showed all the promise in the world… but eh, we can get PICKS!!!! SMDH… hey out of here with that BS man! This guys just trying to get his name out. No bad publicity right?! ….idiot

    1. Faster than a bullet, terrifying scream
      Enraged and full of anger, he’s half man and half machine
      Rides the Metal Monster, breathing smoke and fire
      Closing in with vengeance soaring high

      He is the Painkiller
      This is the Painkiller

  38. Well Grant you got the group riled up with this one. The funny thing is we’ve seen clearly that a deal like this would get the team in SB position a lot quicker with the way it could improve the other areas of the team. Three of the final four teams this year had backup QB’s leading them. The reason was overall team talent and great defenses. With Cousins at QB and the resources added in picks, this could be a SB team as soon as next year. Again, it’s not a scenario that is going to happen for various reasons, but it was a what if idea thrown out there and for the majority to dismiss it in favor of praying at the alter of Jimmy Garoppolo really baffles me.

    1. it’ll be interesting to revisit your narrative at end of ’18 season– comparing how a tagged JG does vs. Cousins, wherever he lands…
      I wonder which qb will get the “yeah, but he had a sub-par team around him” defense…
      Jack seems strangely absent from helping you backup Grant on this one…

      1. If Garoppolo proves to be a much better QB than Cousins, I’ll have no problem copping to that. I’m not here to win a contest, just debating the topic.

    2. Every player has a price, including Jimmy G. It’d be foolish to deny it.
      If Grant is going to be serious about this issue, then the discussion would strictly be about the price.
      Negotiation about a possible trade with any serious team would start at the negotiation floor for the Niners.
      This negotiation floor, IMO, should three firsts and three seconds.
      Unprecedented you say? So is Jimmy G. Only if a team is ready to do a trade on such terms would I, as the Niners GM, be willing to listen about trading my 10-year franchise QB. Anything else is a waste of time.

    3. 3 of 4 teams had backup QBs rocket? But what of that 4th team? It’s the one that says you need incredibly exceptional play at QB to actually win the damn thing. And win it again. And again. JG has shown he has the potential for that exceptional play. Screw potential, he played exceptionally in every game.

      1. rib,

        The point is you can become a contender by building a team, not just getting a QB. Garoppolo has been fantastic, but Cousins is pretty damn good too and the added high draft picks would help build the roster. That is why the scenario Grant presented was a better one imo than just signing Garoppolo long term or tagging him.

        1. I’ll take the QB that gives us the greatest chance to win multiple SBs over the next decade plus.

  39. How Glenn Dickey-esque of you Grant! Controversy for controversy’s sake… ALMOST as good as slamming Joe Montana for the birth of a child during the season…

    1- You’re crazy
    2- You’re crazy
    3- You’re crazy

    • Cousin’s resume is long enough to demonstrate he does not have “IT”.

    • Jimmy’s resume, sparse though it is, demonstrates he DOES have “IT”.


  40. bottom line for 2018– The Jimmy G Experience gets tagged, so JG & the rest of us see just how Lynch, KS, and the crew (Marathe, etc.) improve on the ’17 draft, make good FA deals, & write the big checks to fill the many remaining sub-par roster spots from ’17…
    assuming a better than 8-8 ’18 season, and more fireworks from JG due to getting Garcon back, run game & D upgrades….the real “lock-em-up” contract dealings will start after ’18 season…
    and…#10 9er jersey sales thru the roof…

    1. In honor of Undercenter, I will go out on a big limb and predict Jimmy is signed in February.

      1. you’re overestimating the size of that limb…it’s rather small and likely to break under your weight…

        1. That’s ok. I’m not here to win a contest, just here to worship at the altar of the Jimmy…;>)

      2. While I would like the deal to be done before March 6, I won’t be surprised if it drags on to summer under franchise tag because Jimmy G would want the QB market to stabilize in order to assess his market price. I’d probably do that in his shoes unless the Niners offer him Stafford deal right out of the gate. It’s more likely that the Niners will start negotiations with Carr money. This year’s FA QB market is probably the biggest and most disruptive in FA history. Jimmy G may want the dust to settle.

  41. I like the idea of tagging Jimmy G and immediately shopping him to other teams. Not only might he fetch a very useful bundle of draft picks, but it is a great way to get him to commit to serious contract negotiations or reveal that he is indifferent to playing for the 49ers long term.

    It is great that the team started winning with Jimmy under center, but if you compare his production during the last 5 games of the season to Kaepernick’s production during the last 5 games of 2016, they put up similar numbers, although Garoppolo only had 0.9 yards per rushing attempt compared to 6.8 yards for Kap. I think going 0-9 after a 2-14 season with a demoralized team and weak coaching crew just left people so hungry for a few wins that Jimmy G seems like the messiah for the moment. But he does not deserve to be compared to guys who have carried their teams into the playoffs and won year after year, yet he wants a contract comparable to theirs.

    Jimmy G does have potential to be great (despite throwing stupid interceptions against in his last game), but if his heart isn’t into being a 49er, at some point, that will be a problem. This is a young team with great spirit and cohesion, but not a lot of depth. An engaged and committed quarterback could add a lot. So could a bunch of quality draft picks, leaving tons of cap space to pay Cousins and still leave room to build for the future. Either way, the 49ers are going to be great. The question is, does Garoppolo want to be a part of that greatness? Force his hand and find out where he really stands.

    1. “Not only might he fetch a very useful bundle of draft picks, but it is a great way to get him to commit to serious contract negotiations or reveal that he is indifferent to playing for the 49ers long term.”
      Not enough Hang Time because the writer here is not high enough….

  42. I like the idea of tagging Jimmy G and immediately shopping him to other teams. Not only might he fetch a very useful bundle of draft picks, but it is a great way to get him to commit to serious contract negotiations or reveal that he is indifferent to playing for the 49ers long term.

    It is great that the team started winning with Jimmy under center, but if you compare his production during the last 5 games of the season to Kaepernick’s production during the last 5 games of 2016, they put up similar numbers, although Garoppolo only had 0.9 yards per rushing attempt compared to 6.8 yards for Kap. I think going 0-9 after a 2-14 season with a demoralized team and weak coaching crew just left people so hungry for a few wins that Jimmy G seems like the messiah for the moment. But he does not deserve to be compared to guys who have carried their teams into the playoffs and won year after year, yet he wants a contract comparable to theirs.

    Jimmy G does have potential to be great (despite throwing stupid interceptions in his last game), but if his heart isn’t into being a 49er, at some point, that will be a problem. This is a young team with great spirit and cohesion, but not a lot of depth. An engaged and committed quarterback could add a lot. So could a bunch of quality draft picks, leaving tons of cap space to pay Cousins and still leave room to build for the future. Either way, the 49ers are going to be great. The question is, does Garoppolo want to be a part of that greatness? Force his hand and find out where he really stands.

  43. Now that I’m done laughing, I heard a very interesting take on Cousins. Simply put, he’s Alex Smith. You go through all the film and the advanced metrics, and they’re virtually identical as passers though Smith is more athletic and adds the threat of running to his game.

      1. Smith has been better, as a passer, than Tom Brady in the playoffs. He hasn’t had Belichick to out-coach the opponents. He’s had Jim ‘Choker’ Harbaugh and Andy ‘Choker’ Reid. Two coaches known for being out-coached and choking against tough opponents.

        Seriously, Smith is the NFL’s #6 all-time QB rating playoff passer. He’s just two points behind Aaron Rodgers who is 5th. He’s 3 points behind Drew Brees who is 4th and Matt Ryan who is 3rd. He’s 5-points behind Kurt Warner who just got into the HOF and is second.

        He’s 7 places ahead of Brady, who is 13th. He’s also ahead of”

        Brett Favre (21st)
        Steve Young (22nd)
        Peyton Manning (17th)

        That’s not beta. That’s not bad QB play. That’s Kyle Williams fumbling the game away. That’s the defense giving up 45 points when you hung 44 on the opponent. That’s bad coaches doing stupid things, like Reid ramping it down during the Titans’ game.

        I mean, you shouldn’t lose a playoff game when you put a 116.3 QB rating like he just did…

        1. Oh stop already. Smith was replaced by Reid because he knows he has gone as far as he can with Alex.

            1. Andy Reid just bought himself another year by trading away Alex Smith. It was his poor defense and conservative play calling that cost them. Not Alex Smith.

        2. Dude, you can lay out all the stats you want, but I trust my eyes. I watched Smith play, and I’ve watched Cousins play. Alex Smith was the most aggressive I’ve seen him be up until mid-season, when he went right back to his beta self. There’s a reason Andy Reid moved up for Mahomes, and there’s another reason why Smith is in Washington. Smith is perhaps the smartest quarterback in the league, and yes, he’s athletic, but he’s no Alpha dog….

          1. Being an alpha dog does not mean anything. There are plenty examples of alpha dog NFL QBs who never took their team to the next level or won it all.

      2. Razor

        Toooo much baloney to comment on….Alex Smith has proven time after time that the 49ers made the best move in choosing him in the ’05 draft…#1 overall…then to make the most bone-headed move to allow Harbaugh to send him off to KC for 2 second rounders and a free pass to Kaepernick as starter….Blogs are temporary insanity …History is for real, and Alex Smith will be properly feted when he is inducted into the NFL Hall of Fame. At that time , all of the gas from the blogs will have subsided and Alex will be honored with the Tittles, Montanas, and Youngs. …Hard to believe…

        1. Alex Smith in the Hall Of Fame? I thought I’d heard it all, but I was wrong. Good luck to him.

        2. Oregon you have lost your mind. Rodgers was clearly the better option at #1 overall, Harbaugh didn’t trade Smith – he actually wanted to keep him – Baalke did, and the only way Alex Smith is getting into the HOF is with a ticket.

          1. rocket….

            Nice to see that you have returned to your old self, and that anyone in disagreement “has lost their mind”…Rodgers was CLEARLY the better option at #1, and that 23 teams and GMs also had lost their minds, when they passed on him….

            So Harbaugh actually wanted to keep him…? Funny way of showing it…you’d have to have been a fly on the wall to have figured that out…I’ve always questioned your analytics in personnel decisions…

            1. You’ve got to admit, Oregoniner, that both Harbaugh and Reid decided to move on from Alex Smith. Why do you suppose that is?

              1. Razor

                As players nor coaches, neither has been a champion…THEY’re both losers…Alex has been at the mercy of coaches like them…he plays what they call…How many team records do they have and how many team records does Alex have…? How many probowls for them…Alex has 2…I think that they’re the losers…not Alex…

            2. Chill Oregon, I didn’t mean it in a nasty way. Just reacting in astonishment to what you said. Surely you can understand why I or anyone else would think it just a little bit crazy to say Alex Smith was the right pick over Aaron Rodgers. It is an even bigger stretch to suggest Alex is a HOF player. Neither opinion would be shared by anyone who wasn’t strictly an Alex Smith fan or family member.

              I didn’t use analytics to conclude Harbaugh didn’t want to trade Alex Smith. It’s just common sense and Harbaugh’s own words. He loved having Alex to mentor Kap, and no HC in the league would choose to get rid of a QB they can win with if the starter were to get injured. It’s not like Harbaugh just stopped having confidence in Alex. It was simply a case of realizing that the offense was more explosive with Kap. He still liked Alex and believed in him as a QB. It was purely a business decision made by Trent Baalke to get something for him.

      1. Actually not. Smith threw 56 20+ yard passes in 505 attempts (about 11%) when Reid finally opened up the playbook and got over his ultra-conservative, run-heavy, dink-and-dunk (with a side obsession with the bubble-screen) play calling for 10 of the 15 games Smith played this year.

        Which was higher than Cousins (10%). Or Aaron Rogers (10%). Or Brees (9%). But not as high as Brady (13% (really high for him, he’s usually around 10%)). Or Wentz who threw deep a lot (about 15%) but was spectacularly bad at it (2/14 for 40+ with 2 INTs, 4/18 for 30-40).

        Anyway, Smith is complex subject when it comes to deep ball passing. His early career (Nolan & SIngletary) he was very NFL average in deep passing. Not a prolific deep ball passer, but normal. Under Harbaugh & Reid, he was in a couple of offenses that didn’t have him deep ball pass until this last year so he got a reputation of being a check-down, dink-and-dunk guy who couldn’t win the big one. Even though he’s performed exceptionally well, over his career, as a playoff passer.

        1. Over their respective careers, Cousins has been far more aggressive than Smith. Smith did more of it this year but stopped doing it for a time in the middle of the season because it’s not in his comfort zone. If you think Reid was the reason he hasn’t gone down field more you are fooling yourself. Those options have always been in the offense but Smith has always preferred the safer option which is why he has traditionally had a low interception total.

            1. It was the lowest total of Cousins career and he still threw for more than Smith. In a season where he didn’t have a number of receivers and RB’s playing due to injury and a beat up Oline, he still had better stats than Smith in some areas and blew him away the previous two seasons.

        2. Smith sent 12.3% of his passes deep according to PFF, but according to the NFL’s Next-Gen stats, only CJ Beathard had a lower ‘aggressiveness rating’ than Smith, and this is a metric that measures how often a QB throws into tight windows. This essentially proves that Smith’s deep yard statistics were a result of the scheme and his supporting personnel, rather than his own genius….

  44. So now that the Madden football roster building scenario has been debated, time to get back to reality. When you find a QB that fits your system perfectly, is a great leader that the players gravitate towards and fans love, and has tremendous potential/ upside, you simply do not trade them away. You don’t. You are idiots if you do. Find a way to sign them long term and reap the benefits of being so lucky to have found such a player.

    Any ideas about how you can get extra draft capital by trading them away and signing a replacement in FA come from the pits of Sashi Brown’s moneyball befuddled brain and have complete disregard to how true franchise building is done and that players are in fact people not numbers on a computer screen.

    1. It was a scenario thrown out Scooter. Nobody believes it’s possible and the responses were supposed to be in regard to what you would do if it somehow did come to fruition. It was simply an idea that the team would be better off with Cousins and a slew of high draft picks as opposed to Garoppolo. You disagree and that’s fine but it’s not a Sashi Brown idea at all and would actually be more in line with how to build a roster with the picks they would receive and the established QB that would take over.

      1. It is absolutely a Sashi Brown type idea. Just like trading back for a slew of draft picks rather than taking the franchise QB when you need a QB is a Sashi Brown type idea. Its a really bad idea.

        It would be different if we were talking about getting an upgrade at QB. We are not. We are talking about getting a guy that has been very good at putting up nice personal statistics but achieved nothing other than mediocrity. You dismiss Alex Smith above, but Smith has been statistically just as impressive. Does not make him a great QB. Cousins prior to this season has had a nice supporting cast on offense but has never been able to overcome deficiencies on D. He is the guy that won’t lose you a game and will put up pretty numbers. Good QB, but nothing special. He should go to a place like Denver where his good personal play will be backed up by good skill players and a very strong D.

        JG in seven starts has shown potential to be more than that. You don’t let that go unless you know it was an illusion. The draft picks you would get in return are not worth as much as a top QB.

        1. It’s not a Sashi Brown move because you are getting an established QB in return along with the picks. You have your opinion of Cousins, but the stats say differently. He’s been a top ten performer for most of his time as a starting QB. Basing an opinion on wins and losses is a poor analogy. I’ve addressed this before with Drew Brees and Phillip Rivers as examples. Both have had many losing seasons not being able to overcome deficiencies in other areas of the team, but both are considered top tier QB’s. Cousins is no different. He’s taken a bad team as far as he can while still putting up great numbers.

          Cousins has thrown 20 more TD’s and passed for 2000 more yards than Smith over the course of the last 3 years, so no Smith has not been as impressive statistically, but it gives a good indication of how much other areas of a team can inflate a QB’s win total.

          Garoppolo has been very good no argument against that, but he has not been good enough to turn down the type of proposal Grant threw out imo. That proposal as I mentioned will not happen, but the topic was what if it did and to me it would be an easy decision.

          1. Well, you and I would definitely take different approaches to such a scenario. The trade scenario would literally need to be ludicrous before I even considered it.

              1. And therein, quite honestly, lies the difference between you and I. You can’t get past the fact it is just 7 games and so therefore he isn’t proven and as such the 49ers shouldn’t be so quick to put all their eggs in that basket, so to speak. Getting a lot of picks for an unproven quantity while being able to replace them with a proven starting calibre player does sound good on paper.

                For me its not the number of games or even the stats. It is what he has shown on the field every time he has played. He looks different. A cut above. And he makes the whole team look better. You don’t trade that away.

              2. Garoppolo has looked great I agree with that and this was not about trading him because I think we can do better. It was about whether we would be better off with him or getting multiple high picks and signing Kirk Cousins. Imo, we would be better off with the latter scenario, but that certainly doesn’t mean I don’t see the potential greatness in Garoppolo. As I’ve said multiple times now, I’m totally on board with Jimmy G. and hope they can sign him long term. I just picked the proposal Grant came up with as a better option is all.

        2. Talk about throwing all your eggs into one basket. I really hope Garoppolo doesn’t take a step back. Most of this forum will be on suicide watch if he does :)

          1. Meh, I am not as quick to declare JG the next great. But he has shown the potential to be, and you don’t just let that up and leave until you know it isn’t real.

            1. Well it’s never going to happen so we can all go back to focusing on how the team will build around JG and hope he does become the next Brady.

  45. Golden on if he had a chance to cross paths with Garoppolo. Tate said he has not, but, “I’m kind of a fan. I mean guy shows up, don’t know a lick about the playbook and goes what, 5-0? 6-0? Let’s goooo.”

  46. Garoppolo has 7 starts while Cousins has 57. So multiply JG’s numbers by 8 and compare.

    JG: Comp% 67.3, 18,000 YDs, 96 TDs, 40 INTs, 8.3 Y/A, 99.3 passer rating.
    KC: Comp% 65.5, 16,206 YDs, 99 TDs, 55 INTs, 7.7 Y/A, 93.7 passer rating.

    1. Obviously that isn’t a way to accurately compare, but if you are doing it, Garoppolo wouldn’t be at 96 TD’s he’d be at 80. He has 10 TD’s in 7 starts overall.

      1. Fair enough. Let’s say 80 TDs, I like that number for some reason.

        So that would be 80/40, a 2 to 1 TD/INT ratio. The stuff about JG’s TD/INT ratio is overblown, like the RZ numbers were.

        As Razor says, this was Jimmy’s baseline performance. He doesn’t have a larger WR or TE as a RZ threat. He doesn’t have a good interior OL. He doesn’t have a good, consistent rushing attack to compliment his passing game. It’s very likely that JG will get even better. Cousins is already dancing on the ceiling.

      2. 6.25 games though as he only played one full quarter of his second game. That’d give him 91 TDs based on a playing-time pro-rata.

        1. Doesn’t work because he threw 3 TDs in that quarter which was an outlier. His most TD passes in any other game total was 2.

    1. He did, but I actually enjoyed all the discussions. I said last night that this trade is a Sashi Brown type of trade. It includes only the tangible qualities (such as draft capital and QB statistics); the type of parameters that can readily be put into an equation.
      What’s missing is the intangible qualities (mentioned above several times by AFFP). Sashi Brown was a miserable failure at Cleveland because of his primarily statistical approach to running a football team seemingly without a care for injecting actual football knowledge (which includes the intangibles).

        1. Don’t know – can’t find anything with a google search. Maybe fishing with Baalke in Minnesota.

          1. Actually, they are probably working with a startup to design a Madden-type game for armchair GMs to wheel and deal franchise QBs, etc…..

  47. Grant, really bad idea. It comes down to giving up what most football experts believe is the next dominant QB. Those don’t come along very often, so why throw him away for a lessor and older QB and a bunch off draft choices you don’t really need? With the cap space and draft choices this year we can have close to a complete team, and any remaining weaknesses can be filled next year. Meanwhile we have one of the leagues best QB for the next 8 to 10 years. The Montana era repeated.

  48. Why do people hate Kirk Cousins so much. yes he has not won a playoff game as a starter but neither has JG. we already know what Cousins is and how he has played but we don’t know JG after just 7 games. What makes JG so much better than Cousins that people on this blog would turn down 3 first round picks or 2 first round picks and a second round pick (if a team wants to trade that then that’s on them) its not like Cousins is a Hoyer type QB. Just because Jimmy G has won 5 games for us in a lost season at the end of the season when nobody really has tape of JG to watch and scheme for or because he beat the Jaguars . The GM has already said that he would use JG as trade bait. So he’s logic when he trade for JG was to use him as bait. If the Browns wanted to trade both their first round picks 1 and 4 and another next year or say their second round pick and we signed Cousins why would you turn that down. Our team would be set for a few years with those picks especially if they trade them and get more for the following years. Most teams would not mind having either QB on their team but If you could have your option of picking which one you wanted and having high draft picks why not

  49. I agree with some parts of this column and disagree with others , but I will say it takes some GONADS to write a column like this.

    Agree: We dont have a complete picture of JG. He hasn’t played a full season. He hasn’t played Seahawks or Rams D at full roster. He hasn’t played a playoff game, cold weather game, or a Prime Time nationally televised game .

    Disagree: I do believe that there is enough info to conclude that JG will be a good starting QB and quite possible top 5. Let’s remember that Grant kept laying down markers for JG and JG answered the call.

    Week 15: Grant said this will be JG first true test playing the playoff caliber Titans. JG delivered with a game wining drive with just a minute left. Gould kicked his 5th FG and niners won.

    Week 16: Grant said this will be a huge test against a top 5 Jags D. JG shredded them.

    Week 17: I dont recall Grant’s exact words but he turned a meaningless end of the season game a must win or catastrophe will reign type of situation. Guess what happened.

    Finally Grants argument that Shannahan has a good relationship with Cousins and not JG is a fallacious one. He does have a history with Cousins , but that does not preclude him having an equally good relationship with JG. Shannahan turned Matt Ryan into a MVP after all.

    Instead of thinking of this fantasy scenario , let’s plot to fix our Oline and get JG a good , athletic X receiver.

    1. what about if his relationship with Kirk is much higher than JG. Shanny supposedly has lots of power with the team except the 90 man roster, what would stop him from saying I like JG but I want Kirk instead. With the picks we would get from the JG trade we could get best G and best C in the draft Quinton/Price and maybe get the best WR if their is one in this draft to draft that early. With the trade of JG and sign Kirk along with signing some good FA and drafting good players we would be the team to beat next year. If with JG it may happen next year but probably 2 more years.

  50. 2017 4th quarter stats.

    JG: 28/37 (75.7%), 369 YDs, 3 TDs, 0 INTs, 133.7 passer rating.
    KC: 93/143 (65%), 1,053 YDs, 8 TDs, 5 INTs, 91.0 passer rating.

    2nd half stats.

    JG: 52/73 (71.2%), 657 YDs, 5 TDs, 0 INTs, 121.8 passer rating.
    KC: 177/277 (63.9%), 2,116 YDs, 13 TDs, 8 INTs, 90.8 passer rating.

    1. Remember when year-after-year, the 49ers were a terrible 2nd half team. Exact opposite with Jimmy at the helm.

    2. #80,
      Those stats go hand in hand with my earlier post where I said who do you want at QB in the 4th quarter with 2 mins left down by 5 with the ball on your own 20? Looks like a no brainer to me.

      1. +1.

        I was confident that JG would march us down the field and get the win against the Titans. Jimmy is special. I see it, you see it, and most importantly, Lynch and Shanny sees it.

    1. Interesting read.

      “The team that everyone’s copying right now didn’t win the Super Bowl, but they came close.”

      “The Atlanta Falcons used shotgun less than any other team during their 2016 run to the big game, lining up under center on 60 percent of snaps.”

      So teams are copying Kyle Shanahan. The ultimate sign of respect, not just coach speak.

  51. I wonder what those who want Cousins will say in 2023 when Cousins has been cut from a mediocre team, JimmyG is being compared to Brady and is leading his team to the playoffs year after year (and has many good years ahead of him) while those precious draft choices of 2018 are long forgotten.

  52. Hey Grant…when will the PD IT Division do something with the withered ‘Popular Tags’ panel on this blog?

    1. It’s the Hand Thing.
      Spit in one hand
      Wish in the other
      Which fills up first?
      (10-40 Bye)

  53. Cousins isn’t in the same league as Jimmy G. His game is clunky and his passes aren’t much better…

  54. I’m not saying I agree with you Grant, but in theory, how would this work with the timeline in place? Free agency hits and Cousins waits around? I am sure he’ll have a deal in place the night before FA hits. Why would he care to have a “wink-nod” deal with the Niners? The Vikings are a better team and will probably go all in on him. Furthermore, If JG and Cousins are somewhat on a level playing field like you said, why would a team give up so much for JG when they can get Cousins without the giving up picks? I just don’t see how this would all work out. Good think piece though… I hope Jimmy G sticks around and signs a deal. He sure turned the tide on a dismal season. Even though the Niners were eliminated from playoff contention, I was excited to watch them play every week again. He took a depleted team of rookies and fill-ins and elevated them to win 5 games in a row, two of which were against playoff teams that went on to win playoff games. Kirk Cousins had a similar situation at the end of the year and did not have the same results as JG.

    1. He’ll have a deal in place with the 49ers. And the deal will go into effect once the 49ers trade Garoppolo.

      Cousins has familiarity with Shanahan and Garcon.

      Garoppolo is worth more than Cousins because Garoppolo is younger and full up hype.

      1. Grant Cohn says:
        February 1, 2018 at 6:31 pm

        Garoppolo is worth more than Cousins because Garoppolo is younger and full up hype.

        Somebody is full of something alright, and it’s not Jimmy;>)

  55. Change of topic for the willing:
    I heard on network news that the Vikes stadium holds 65,000.
    Now The Stick was an old, decrepit dump, but the arguement for the new stadium was that you could never host a SB with a stadium that small.
    I guess you can if the public subsidizes the Billionaires in the NFL by taking on public indebtedness to build the stadiums.

    1. I’m not completely sure about the Minnesota building, but most of these new stadiums were built to add seating for SB’s. I know Levi’s was, but your point is well taken. The new stadiums come with a guarantee of hosting a SB and it is on the backs of the tax payers.

  56. Crab’s tips:
    Don’t eat yellow snow

    Don’t drink & drive

    Don’t try edibles for the first time & write about quarterbacks

      1. I’ll play along:

        Don’t tug on Superman’s cape!

        Don’t pull the mask off that old Lone Ranger!

        Don’t mess around with Jimmy!

    1. That really isn’t that surprising. Smith gets a bad rap from San Fran fans because they remember the pre-Harbaugh Alex. But the guy has been very good for quite a few years now. Very professional, very smart, very efficient, won’t lose you the game. Is it any wonder he is held in high regard around the league?

      1. I don’t think there’s a smarter quarterback in the league, or a better mentor for a young quarterback. Going to be very interesting to see how he does in Washington this year. He’s not going to have near the Firepower he had in Kansas City….

        1. If Jordan Reed can stay healthy, he is the best TE in NFL. Crowder and Doctson are pretty good WR. Oh, and he will be reunited with his old buddy Vernon. Agreed that without Reed, it is a slight step down from KC.

          1. Slight? Not so sure. He’s not going to have Hill who is a matchup nightmare. He’s not going to have Kelce, and Gronk is the best TE in the league, not Reed. He’s not going to have the rookie of the year, Kareem Hunt. Crowder is good, but Doctson? He hasn’t lived up to his draft status yet, and Vernon is ancient. Reed is an excellent TE when available, but he wasn’t all year. Their offensive line is getting long in the tooth too, and their defense is no where near as good as the Chiefs. Unless the Redskins ace their draft, and lure in some key F/A’s, I think it’s more than a slight step down….

            1. I agree with Razor. Smith had better weapons with the Chiefs and the running game especially will be less than what he’s become accustomed to. This past season Cousins had to play most of the season without Reed, his top two RB’s, and a revolving door on the Oline. I don’t think he’s been given any credit for just how tough it was to play through that and play well as he did.

            2. 2 major requirements for any Alex based success in WAS will be an OL rebuild and run game improvement…
              Smith is not anywhere near the improviser that JG is, let alone Cousins, so the Skin’s will need a Wentz/PHI style attack, with emphasis on the TE, a dominating OL, and short pass game…

      2. So if we just compare statistical performance over the last 4 years, I think cousins fairs better than Smith. Also, I am sure Smith is both smart and professional , but I dont think I have ever heard any criticisms about cousins for being dumb and unprofessional.

        1. I think Cousins would be in a better situation if he were to go to a team like Arizona, whose offense throws downfield. In addition he’d have an elite running back for a change, plus a stout defense….

          1. Yeah it would be a good fit for him with McCoy I think, although he’s played in a WCO his whole career so it might take some time.

        2. Oh if there is one thing you can’t fault Cousins for its putting up nice stats. Even some of his teammates were reportedly impressed with his ability to put up big personal stat lines at the end of the 2016/17 season.

      3. Classy guy.
        Good not very good
        And he won’t win you a game either.
        Mediocre. Always has been.

    2. And you can throw everything Cowherd said out the window because he made up the comment he attributed to Mortensen. Here’s the actual tweet from Mortensen:

      Jan 31

      Alex Smith is held in much higher regard in the football community than what you hear and read in the wake of pending trade to Washington.

      Nothing about being held in higher regard than Cousins. He’s also wrong in his assessment of Cousins not being athletic. Cousins moves around the pocket very well and can run for a first down. He also had 4 rushing TD’s this year. Just another gas bag who doesn’t care about accuracy in what he says.

    1. We must come around to Grant’s viewpoint that it’s difficult to assess Jimmy’s potential because of his small sample size. Maybe if the Niners win the Super Bowl next year — or a couple over the next 2-3 years, we can begin to consider his franchise quotient.

  57. Grant

    Good piece. Your main point on leverage is important. Would I rather have Cousins and the first and fourth picks in the draft or Garoppolo? I’d rather have Garoppolo, but that’s because he looks like a blend of Brady and Montana. Cousins looks like Montana, but without “it” and without the pinpoint accuracy.

    So now what? I’m saying Garoppolo gets 5 years, $127.5M, $85M guaranteed, and nobody else gets more. The leverage aspect will prove a non-issue because of how much and how easily Garoppolo won over the locker room. Dumping him would create a leadership void in the locker room, as the vital guys like Staley would tune out management.

    1. Thanks for at least saying why you would pick JG over Cousins, people are just throwing him under the bus like he’s a bottom 5 QB when he’s a top 10 QB the last 3 years and are not giving a good reason why. I really haven’t watch much tape on Cousins but from what I can tell he has played with good players and without good players but he has at least maintain a high level of QB play and stats also with new OC as well. If JG has played lets say 3 seasons and put the same stats as Kirk then no I wouldn’t trade him just for the fact that he is younger. but JG was a backup, and has only started 7 games and now will get a big contract and we don’t know how he will do in 16 games.

      But with picks 1 and 4 we could get more picks to set up the roster for future drafts, or draft down and pick up a DB/RB/C/G on rookie contracts

  58. Question on the franchise tag. If a team places the franchise tag on a player set to become a free agent and if the player refuses to sign that FT, then does the player still become a free agent or does he sit out until some type of agreement is reached with the team that placed the FT on him?

    1. No the player does not become a FA until the team releases the FT. The player would just sit out the year.

    2. Cubes, a franchise tag would be a pretty useless thing if a player could ignore it and bail on a team. Pretty sure he’d have sit.

  59. Grant, I can’t believe someone who covers the 49ers would miss the obvious flaw in your idea. That is the fact trading JimmyG would create a firestorm against the front office. Lynch would be run out of town. Here, after many lean years, we have what could be the next Montana, a player who has captured the hearts of the fans and given them hope, who is the reason for the surge in ticket buying, who by all reports has been fully accepted by the team as their leader, who is the reason so many can’t wait for the season to start.

    And you want to trade him for Kirk Cousins????? Gezzzz Grant, use your head.

    1. Actually, Grant did not go the distance in developing is idea. After scanning Barrow’s blog, the path is obvious to me. Niners should first change Jimmy G’s position to that of LB (he played the position in HS). Then they can franchise tag him for much less — before trading him to another team.
      Maximize the potential!

      1. These guys are just trying to jack up his price tag. I have sources inside the FBI that Jimmy has been texting receivers they will be well compensated if they publicly voice their desire to play with him…;>)

  60. Cousins is a good QB in the league who can do well when surrounded with top players at all the positions. He’s not alone. There are quite few Cousins in the league. I doubt Cousins would have won 5 in a row surrounded by cast Jimmy had for those last 5 games. No way. I believe JL/KS believes JG is going to be a great QB, not just another good one. I believe that also. The whole idea of trading Jimmy G for Cousins and draft picks is far fetched, ill conceived considering Cousin’s actual accomplishments in the league, and simply won’t happen. Grant is setting himself and his overly critical opinion of JG so he can say I told you so if the Niners fall anywhere short of playoffs. Maybe Grant’s girlfriend is taking a liking to JG too much and it’s rubbing the little man the wrong way? Hmmmm………. ;>)

    1. Juan,

      That simply isn’t true. He has never been surrounded by top players as you say, and this past season he was playing with backups across the board a lot of the time. That is a total myth that some have jumped on because Scot McCloughan made a comment along those lines. The reality is that Cousins has performed at a high level for 3 years now and it’s been with different players and different Coaches calling the plays, along with little support from the defense and running game.

      The trade is not going to happen because it’s not viable for many different reasons, but the 49ers receiving multiple high picks along with Cousins would be a great deal for this team if it did.

      1. Cousins has had excellent supporting casts in the past. 2017 was the anomaly. He did very well last season given the circumstances.

        1. I disagree. His first year as the starter he didn’t have Desean Jackson for a chunk of the season and a bottom third running game. The next season you could say he had the best group of his time there with Jackson, Garcon and Reed all staying healthy for most of the season but again the running game was bottom 3rd and that season he threw for almost 5000 yards so it shows what he can do with a decent supporting cast around him at least in the passing game.

    2. Good rosters, poor rosters… what was the outcome? Did this high level of Cousins play take any of these teams deep into the postseason?

  61. If I am not wrong, Joel Embiid, the NBA all-star signed a 5-year $148M contract with the 76ers last October (with incentives to earn another $30M) has played less than 100 basketball games in his entire career (HS, college and NBA combined)!
    Talk about small sample size…

  62. Grant what you fail to explain is why it’s good for the team.
    The extra draft picks will give the Nines a chance to build a better team. To focus on JG versus KC is futile. Both are good ( or good enough) QBs and will get us some wins. But as a team we need MAJOR improvements on offense and defense. The extra picks might get us there. To think that JG or KC can do it on their own is ludicrous!
    If we want another SB, we need a better team! A good QB helps but let’s not forget that Kap got us to a SB win within inches….
    I say let’s do the trade and pick up some good CB, WR, OL, FS and a defense that dominates!!!

    1. that’s what we need good players all around and especially if we can get them on their rookie contracts so we can also sign good FA to the roster. If another QB needy team wants to give up their future to get JG why not, as long as you have something the same in place. Just no more DL in the first round unless its going to be pass rusher


    Scot McCloughan told a Denver radio station: “He’s a good player. Is he special? I don’t see special. But also, we were still building a roster around him to make him special.”

    Speaking to several NFL front office executives Wednesday about Cousins reveals a belief around the league that Cousins is a good quarterback who needs a strong team around him to win. He is not viewed as an elite passer like Aaron Rodgers, Drew Brees or Tom Brady, but the belief is a team can win with him.

    “There’s no question that Kirk Cousins is a capable quarterback,” Billick said. “With the Jets, is he the guy? We’ll find out. They’re going to have to do a whole lot more than just Kirk Cousins to get that thing back on track.”

    1. Not really anything new here. No one is comparing him to those guys and the “he needs a strong team around him” criteria is pretty much the same for most of the QB’s in the league including Brees who led the Saints to a 7-9 record for 3 straight seasons because he didn’t have a strong team around him.

      1. That’s the thing though WRT this column. If it were trade JG for Rodgers, then yes, I would strongly consider it. But we’re talking about Cousins who is a step below Brady, Rodgers, and arguably Brees. JG has a higher ceiling and is younger. We already know JG can win with us. We assume Cousins could win, but we don’t really know for sure. Plus JG has already won over the team.

        1. It wasn’t about a Garopplo for Cousins swap. It was about trading Garoppolo for multiple first and second round picks and signing Cousins in FA. I wouldn’t do a 1 for 1 swap either. The attraction was getting the picks and a quality QB.

          1. “It wasn’t about a Garopplo for Cousins swap.”

            True, but the end result would be a QB change. A change I wouldn’t make. I actually proposed Grant’s scenario in November. Then I saw JG play, so I dropped it.

            1. Fair enough. For me the additional picks to build up the roster and the addition of a quality QB was a better option in the scenario presented, but that wasn’t a realistic option anyway. Garoppolo hopefully will be the long term answer for us and I’m looking forward to seeing him play with a full offseason and TC.

              1. Jimmy Garoppolo is the best option. Additional picks that might never develop when you have a proven player who has come in and made a huge impression on the entire organization and you want to gamble that option away for more draft picks and an aging quarterback in Kirk Cousins? Thankful you are not the general manager or president.

              2. rocket

                In theory , you’re correct as everyone on this thread knows and secretly agrees….Theory being that with more 1st and 2nd round picks, we could rule the NFL…As I have pointed out several times, extra picks can show our brilliance in drafting… or show our asses in draft futility…as we have done on numerous occasions in the past…Give up Jimmy G for even a half dozen draft choices would not be anything but stupid “”…A bird in the hand etc””. …Kwame Harris, Rashun Woods, Kentwan Balmer, Chilo Rachal, AJ Jenkins, Marcus Martin, and who knows…perhaps Joshua Garnet, Solomon Thomas, and our ILB from Abalama who doesn’t know that dope is illegal in that state…. John Lynch must show that he is more than just a replacement for Kent Baalke….WE KEEP JIMMY G…

              3. Having more 1st and 2nd round picks increases the odds of hitting on players. It’s been proven very clearly that you have a greater chance of making the SB if you have a strong defense and ST’s with a good(sometimes less than good) QB leading the offense. Of the so called Elite QB’s in this league, only Brady has been a regular participant in the SB. The best teams get there: not the teams with a great QB and average talent around him.

      1. That was one of the main reasons why I listed him in my previous off-season prediction.

          1. I don’t think I was able to see it Scooter. I was dealing with computer issues from Christmas up through January, and I had to, as a result, play catch-up on several assignments for my Microeconomics class.

  64. After a couple of hundred laps around this one we’ve come to a Dead Heat on the merry-go-round.
    On to the next question!
    Lobster Roll or Philly Cheese Steak?
    For me- IF they’re both made right, it’s Lobster Roll
    But if you hide the lobster in Mayo or drown the steak in cheap cheese, fogeddaboutit.

    1. Philly Cheese Steak for me, but with real Cheese, not that Cheese Whiz crap a couple of the Philly staples use.

          1. Had a guy out here for a while who came up from North Beach SF and opened a lil pizza joint. He had a locally made hot Italian sausage Sammie with grilled onions and sweet peppers and a light dollup of local Pepeto. Called it The North Beach. It was The Bomb!
            Then he closed suddenly. 6 week’s later I saw him driving a Maybach around town. Dats a lotta pizza-pies! I dunno, but he looked happy.

    2. Philly Cheese Steak. I now know what I’ll be eating on Sunday. Thanks for the suggestion. Go Philly!

      1. Har!
        No fing Mayo! Lightly toasted bun. Ripe avo, diced cucumbers, minced celantro and cabbage, lime juice, steamed lobster, maybe some waaayyyy-hot green sauce.
        Yeah, F Brady, enough is enough!
        Damn Yankees! Syndrome.

      1. Lol. No not nirvana but it backs up my point about how he was the best natural pocket passer I had seen in a long time coming out of College. As I mentioned when he was drafted, I’m screwed either way because if he was a bust I’d get pummeled on here, and if he was as good as I thought he was, we’d have to face a formidable player twice a season. No win situation for me.

    1. If he does go to the Cards, this is one hell of a division for QB’s all of a sudden. I’d rather he go somewhere else too.

    2. From that article [I can’t imagine Rocket being anymore pleased :)]:

      Goff explained that he has studied basically every snap that Cousins has taken over the last three years.

      “He’s tremendous,” Goff said. “I don’t think he gets enough credit for what he’s done. Some of the throws he made [that] we see on film. You rewind it, you watch it again. It’s unbelievable.”

  65. Smith agreed to a four-year contract with the Redskins at $94 million, $71 million guaranteed.


    I agree because Smith’s a proven commodity. JG wanting that kind of money after 1/2 a season is risky, I know.
    But given how the other 49er QB’s made the O-line look amateurish compared to JG making the same line look like all stars with his quick release, I’d take the JG gamble.

    So, although your trade makes incredible sense, a franchise QB is hard to come by.

    1. “The Niner Faithful got a limited look at the San Francisco 49ers’ true potential under head coach Kyle Shanahan in 2017. After sitting through Brian Hoyer’s six straight losses to start the season and then a 1-4 effort by rookie C.J. Beathard, fans finally got a look at Jimmy Garoppolo.

      When you consider the quality of the opponents Garoppolo went up against during that run, the feat is even more impressive. ”

  66. Panthers will interview 49ers’ Martin Mayhew for GM job
    6 hours ago • 12 comments
    By David Bonilla

  67. TomD believes 49ers should take the Garoppolo contract plunge…..Time to get out of the wading pool and dive into the deep end if your goal is to compete with the Drew Brees’, Brady’s, & Wentz’s. Ony Jimmy G gives you that chance.

    Speaking of Garoppolo, McShay loves the potential of the new 49ers quarterback, who was acquired via a trade with the New England Patriots on October 30, 2017. There have been a lot of reports and rumors surrounding why that deal took place, but San Francisco is reaping the benefits of it.

    McShay lives in Boston, so he closely watched the story develop and talked to people with the Patriots.

    “It wasn’t just, ‘Hey, this guy’s pretty good. We want to get some compensation,'” McShay said. “They truly believed that he was going to carry the torch [in New England] and that they could continue to win at a very high level. They absolutely loved him. Believe whatever rumors and however he got [to San Francisco], but I think we got to see, very quickly and in a short sample, what he can be.

    “He’s got that ‘It’ factor. He’s a little quite. He’s not as boisterous, but he carries himself with confidence. He’s in control. He’s mobile. He gets the ball out quickly. I thought he was a really good player coming out and I knew from talking to guys with the Patriots that he just kept getting better and better watching [Patriots QB] Tom [Brady], how he works, and just doing the little things to continue to improve his game.”

    1. A few days ago I mentioned the anonymous WR that was asking about Jimmy. So that makes three with Tate and Brown. It’s not just the Niner fans that are highly impressed with JG. It’s pretty much a concensus.

    1. He got a little (not necessarily positive) notice with his ‘Belichick Is Bezelbob’ article.
      If runs with this current one, it might be fun.

    1. Razor:
      First notice Zach Sieler as a 2 X finalist for the Cliff Harris National Small College Defensive Player of the Year award and looked up his scouting report. With a BSME degree I never thought he’d declare for the NFL. His stats are interesting, but even he says the NFL scouts think he’s late day 3, or undrafted free agent!

      1. That’s ok. I’ve been looking at all the tape on him that I can find, and he’s big, got a nice, explosive first step, pursuit speed looks to be more than adequate and he’s powerful. We’ve got two 7th round picks. He’s supposed to be at Michigan’s Pro Day, if I’m not mistaken. He could move into the 6th round with a good showing….

        1. Razor:
          You never know, it could happen. I haven’t seen his tape, but like I said, his stats are interesting.
          We’ll see if the 9ers bring him in for a work out?

          1. Check him out on the first above thread. Granted he’s playing against sub par talent, but he’s a man among boys. Just destroying people, and burying quarterbacks six feet under. We could call him the undertaker…;>)

  68. Rocket, with all due respect, I used the phrase “can do well”, not “did well” with top players surrounding him. I guess I should have said “can do well if he had”. My bad. The fact is, all the excuses in the world won’t hide the fact that he hasn’t really done much other than accumulate some very good, but useless stats. I myself want Super Bowl victories, not just good QB statistics. I think Jimmy G has that certain magic that separates himself from the Cousins of the league. I saw every home game Joe and Steve played in person, along with five of the six Super Bowls. I’ve witnessed the magic up close and personal. From what I have seen, I believe Jimmy has that same magic. I think JL and KS think the same thing. In fact, they know it. That is why this hypothetical deal will never take place, because it would be a real stinker of a deal for the team. No magic involved whatsoever.

    1. Except that’s pretty silly when you think about it. I mean, seriously, that’s about as impossible and unreasonable standard as you can imagine in teams sports. TEAMS win football games and TEAMS lose football games. The QB is the most important, but he’s not the only guy out there.

      Lousy QBs like Trent Dilfer, Jeff Hostetler (Phil Simms’ back-up), Joe Flacco, Dough Williams, Brad Johnson, Eli Manning, etc. have all won Super Bowls/Championships. Meanwhile these HOFers and/or just plain outstanding QBs have none:

      Dan Marino
      Tony Romo
      Archie Manning (who was 35-101-3 on the ‘Aints, the Cleveland Browns of their time yet managed 2x Pro Bowls)
      John Brodie
      Jim Kelly
      Dan Fouts
      YA Tittle — 7 pro bowls, 4 NFL MVPs and bupkis.
      Ken Anderson — Better than Bradshaw every Sunday…
      Warren Moon
      Frankie Albert
      Sid Luckman — Never won a Championship
      Fran Tarkenton
      Slingin’ Sammy Baugh
      Randall Cunningham
      Boomer Esiason

      And many others, despite going to the playoffs repeatedly were lucky to get one (at least on the merits):

      Steve Young
      Aaron Rodgers
      Brett Favre
      Peyton Manning (Peyton Manning only won one as a legit ‘starter’ while in the other he was carried while being a mediocre game manager).
      Drew Brees
      Johnny Unitas
      Len Dawson
      Ken Stabler

      So, yeah… You may think you have some winning argument… But it’s not. Excellence at QB, even HOF excellence, can’t make you a Super Bowl winner if your defense gives it up like the class slut on Prom Night…

  69. Hehehe
    This headline to an article in the PD this morning had me saying “What??!?
    ‘The gospel according to Cohn has a true believer’
    Not to worry. It’s about Roy Cohn, and another guy.

  70. 2Mock Drafts:

    1. Cleveland Browns: Saquon Barkley, RB, Penn State
    2. New York Giants: Josh Rosen, QB, UCLA
    3. Indianapolis Colts: Bradley Chubb, DE, N.C.State
    4. Cleveland Browns: Minkah Fitzpatrick, S/CB, Alabama
    5. Denver Broncos: Sam Darnold, QB, USC
    6. New York Jets: Josh Allen, QB, Wyoming
    7. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Quenton Nelson, G, Notre Dame
    8. Chicago Bears: Joshua Jackson, CB, Iowa
    9. San Francisco 49ers: Denzel Ward, CB, Ohio State

    The 49ers will have a great chance to contend for a playoff spot this upcoming season, but to do so, they’ll need to be able to stop Russell Wilson and Jared Goff. The problem is that their cornerbacks are terrible, so this is a position that will need to be addressed this spring.

    It’s going to be a close call as to which corner is selected first between Joshua Jackson and Denzel Ward. Both could be taken near the bottom of the top 10….Via Walter

    1 Cleveland Browns — Sam Darnold, QB, USC
    2 New York Giants — Josh Allen, QB, Wyoming
    3 Indianapolis Colts — Bradley Chubb, DL, NC State
    4 Cleveland Browns — Saquon Barkley, RB, Penn State
    5 Denver Broncos — Baker Mayfield, QB, Oklahoma
    6 New York Jets — Josh Rosen, QB, UCLA
    7 Tampa Bay Buccaneers — Derwin James, DB, Florida State
    8 Chicago Bears — Courtland Sutton, WR, SMU
    9 San Francisco 49ers — Denzel Ward, DB, Ohio State

    1. TomD:
      Don’t be shocked if Denver / Elway sign Cousins, or tries to, if they can clear enough cap space! Then drafts Quinton Nelson with their first round pick……and breaks Razors heart

      1. Dude, my heart will ache if Nelson comes off the board before we pick. I’m hoping the Broncos miss out on Cousins, but if they do sign him, we’ll need them to draft Williams or Zeus to add to their OL, if that’s the route they pursue. Then I’ll pray the Buccaneers pass on him, and that the Bears take Ridley….

        1. I think there is a good chance of that Razor. As I mentioned before, the Giants, Colts, and Broncos could easily draft Nelson.

          1. I know, I know. It seems like a long shot, but so did Buckner. I may have to consult an old Romanian witch friend to influence those teams decisions…;>)

            1. I think a more likely target is Will Hernandez. While he is close to 350, everything I have read on him indicates that he moves like a guard that is 30 pounds lighter.

              1. Yea, but they’ll need to; A. Trade down, B. Trade back up into the bottom of the 1st or top of the 2nd for him. Same goes for Wynn or O’neill. I think Hernandez is an indication that size is not a sticking point, but feet and lateral movement are….

              2. MidWest:
                *I like Hernandez too. The Combine should provide more information on players that fit the 9ers scheme. While he’s not a sleeper, I think Wynn’s combine results will impress many NFL coaches & GM’s.
                *I would also like Lynch to pursue OG F/A’s Andrew Norwell, Justin Pugh and C Weston Richburg. Camerron Fleming may be a young F/A OT the 9ers could develop.

  71. With all due respect Moses, LOL! Eli is lousy? If he’s lousy, than Cousins is beyond putrid. Cousins couldn’t hold Eli’s jock strap! Thanks for the laugh though. Cousins is also no better than Flacco or Hostetler. In fact, I’d say worse. That argument is truly lacking of any sanity. Keep them coming though! I love comedy! What has Kirk done again?

  72. Lot of people think that this trade couldnt happen with JG but thats not true. JG will sign the FT to have that $25 milion salary and he will have a say in where he goes the Bills would be perfect. If JG is indeed a great player or will be than his price for a trade couldnt be any higher than this season. Their is at least about 10 teams maybe more who need or would switch QBs. If their is a deal that some team wants to make and give up so much then why not trade JG as long as we get a top ten QB.

    This is not about not liking JG or liking Kirk better its just an option that the 49ers have which is a great issue|problem to have. Their choice of QB that can win games and play. It will be interesting to see which way they go. The team wil be able to sell the whole signing Kirk and trading JG as long as they sign Kirk to a cheaper deal or fair deal, sign lot of top FA and with the extra draft picks draft the best PA or whatever need is left with having future high picks in the future.

    1. “….sign the FT….and will have a say in where he goes.”
      How do you figure that? Once he signs, he’s a team asset to keep or trade. If they do decide to move him, he has no “say”in it whatsoever.

  73. So, a hypothetical question. If the team tags a QB and that QB decides to not sign the FT and sits out a year, what happens the next year? Can he be FT’d again and then decide not to sign and sit out again and so on. Clearly this wouldn’t happen, but I’m wondering what happens beyond the first year in this bizarre yet theoretically possible scenario.

    1. Cubus
      What I found is that a player can only be FT three times total in his career, even if by different teams.
      I interpret this to mean if a guy doesn’t sign and sits out, he could be tagged again the next year and even once more, although as with Cousins, the Tag figure accelerates whether or not he plays (I think.) This would be devastating for the player’s career and earning power (to sit out). It would be absurd for the team as well in terms of untapped and wasted asset and for FA relations going forward.
      Wash took it about as far as made sense to them, and acquiring AS was the best patch they could put on Cousins’ too pricey retention and preference to leave.

      1. Thanks for the work and I agree with your assessments. It will be interesting to see the financials of Cousins’ long-term contract when it is agreed to.

  74. The bottom line on the whole discussion in my HO is it’s not going to happen. Could it? Sure. Anything is possible in life and Grant’s proposal is no less outlandish than Seb’s laughable idea of Kaep returning to the NFL and taking the league by storm. But, I think JG will be our starting QB next year, whether under the franchise tag, or with a long term deal. He’s not going to sit out a year if he’s FT. That’s preposterous. He’s waited years to play. Either way, he’s going to be very rich man. Cousins will go on to have a typical year, win some games, accumulate some good statistics, maybe make the playoffs, and maybe even win one playoff game. Will he win the Super Bowl? Looking at his resume, doubt it.

    1. Kirk is better than Bortles. With a real good Defense, Bortles got close to a SB. On the right team Cousins might as well.
      Straight up choice? I choose Jimmy G for SF

  75. I wouldn’t get Ward or Nelson at #9 because can get starting CB and G in free agency, use #9 for Edge (Landry or Edmunds).

    I have question – Ward, Armstead, Lynch are possible trade for draft choices. Can this be done before free agency opens on March 12, and does it matter whether or not they are currently free agents?

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