KEY POINTS

  • Jimmy Garoppolo is set to return and resume throwing following his shoulder surgery in March, a report says
  • Garoppolo's trade is still in the air, with NFL teams possibly wary of the $25 million salary owed to Super Bowl champ
  • The Niners may consider a deal with the Browns and swap Garoppolo for Baker Mayfield

The San Francisco 49ers will be pressed to make a decision on Jimmy Garoppolo at some point and may pick up a portion of his $25 million non-guaranteed contract for the 2022-23 NFL season, according to reports.

The 30-year-old play-caller is expected to start throwing in the next few weeks after being cleared, Jeremy Fowler of ESPN reported, citing an unnamed source.

The trade market for Garoppolo could heat up after he starts throwing and passes a physical, according to the report.

Garoppolo surprised the Niners when he decided to undergo surgery on his right shoulder in March. This reportedly altered the rumored plans of San Francisco to possibly trade the two-time Super Bowl champion, considering no team would want to take in a recovering player in the offseason.

Even with Garoppolo returning, there remains no guarantee that NFL teams would agree to a trade for him. The likely scenario is that most would want to see if the 2013 Walter Payton Award winner still has the arm to help in any NFL team’s quarterbacking needs.

But if the Niners are bent on cutting ties with Garoppolo, San Francisco would have to pay a portion of his $25 million salary to hopefully gain suitors.

The move is understandable since other NFL teams would want to pay less for someone who is coming off surgery.

One possible destination that could make sense is Cleveland. The Browns may find themselves in a bind soon, with Deshaun Watson facing possible indefinite suspension over his legal troubles outside the football field, the Wall Street Journal reported.

The Browns do have another quarterback in Baker Mayfield. But the 27-year-old is seeking a move out of Cleveland following the arrival of Watson.

Mayfield did not appreciate the fact that he was not informed about the deal involving the three-time Pro Bowler and only learned about it through some other medium.

A trade between the Browns and the Niners involving Garoppolo and Mayfield could make sense. However, it all boils down to the money due to the former.

The Browns have had their share of picking up portions of the salaries of the players they trade away. This time, it could be different unless Cleveland can mend ties with an unhappy Mayfield.

Jimmy Garoppolo #10 of the San Francisco 49ers
Jimmy Garoppolo #10 of the San Francisco 49ers Getty Images | Stacy Revere
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