The Deshaun Watson-Houston Texans saga took another wild turn Sunday morning as both the star quarterback and the franchise watch the playoffs from afar after a disappointing 4-12 season.
Sources told ESPN's Chris Mortensen that Watson would consider a trade to the Miami Dolphins, in which Miami would send quarterback Tua Tagovailoa and draft compensation to Houston. So, how does this all come back to the 49ers and their own QB questions? Less than 20 minutes after Mortensen's tweet, CBS Sports' Jason La Canfora tweeted he's had league executives text him a similar trade concept where Watson would land with the 49ers for Jimmy Garoppolo and several draft picks.
The key name to this all is Nick Caserio, the recently hired Houston Texans general manager. Watson reportedly isn't happy with the move, which could help the 49ers land the superstar QB. Caserio is a former director of player personnel for the New England Patriots. Would he want a Garoppolo reunion and bring the 49ers' QB to Houston?
Meanwhile, the 49ers, namely coach Kyle Shanahan and general manager John Lynch, have stood firm that they expect Garoppolo to be San Francisco's starting quarterback next season, but you don't balk at the chance of adding a star like Watson. Garoppolo is set to cost $26.9 million against the salary cap next season. He can be traded or released for minimal financial cost, and truth be told, he's not Watson.
Despite his top star receiver being traded before the season, Watson, 25, led the NFL in passing yards with 4,823. He threw 33 touchdown passes and only seven interceptions, while also leading the NFL in yards per attempt (8.9) and yards per completion (12.6). And he still has the ability to beat a defense with his legs.
There's no doubt it would take a ton to acquire Watson. The 49ers likely would have to send at least Garoppolo, two first-round draft picks and a second-rounder. And that might be on the light side. If presented the chance to get Watson in a 49ers jersey, Lynch would have to say yes at nearly every offer.
This still likely is a pipedream for the 49ers. However, those around the league reportedly are toying with the idea. Don't hold your breath, but don't completely lose hope. Not yet.