Add a new team to the list of possible destinations for 49ers-quarterback-for-now Jimmy Garoppolo.
The New York Jets’ preseason got off to the worst-possible start on Friday night when franchise quarterback Zach Wilson went down with a non-contact knee injury against the Philadelphia Eagles.
Wilson was running in the open field, and tried to make a cut. His right knee buckled and he went to the ground.
Former NFL team doctor David J. Chao, who provides analysis based on his years of studying video of injury, shared his opinion that he is worried that Wilson sustained a torn ACL. That injury would end the season for Wilson, the No. 2 overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft.
Garoppolo is currently available because the 49ers had the No. 3 overall pick last year and went with Trey Lance.
While Wilson had a noticeable limp in the locker room after the game, Jets head coach Robert Saleh told reporters the team believes the ACL is intact, but they won't know for sure until an MRI is done Saturday.
Meanwhile, Garoppolo’s future is unsettled.
The 49ers hope to be able to trade Garoppolo, and it’s possible that the Jets could be interested in another quarterback. Currently, the Jets’ quarterbacks are Joe Flacco, Mike White and Chris Streveler.
The Jets could be interested in Garoppolo because he could almost immediately step into their system. Garoppolo appears to be making good progress in his throwing routine from shoulder surgery he underwent in March.
Former 49ers passing game coordinator Mike LaFleur is the Jets’ offensive coordinator under head coach Robert Saleh, the former 49ers’ defensive coordinator.
The Seattle Seahawks and Cleveland Browns are among the other teams that might be interested in acquiring Garoppolo at the beginning of the season.
The 49ers want to trade Garoppolo in order to get something in return for his services.
The team gave his representation permission to seek a trade after the season. It seems doubtful that any team would be willing to pay Garoppolo his scheduled salary of .2 million, so the sides would have to work out a deal in order for a trade to happen.
But any interested team might also remain patient, knowing that the 49ers do not intend to hold onto Garoppolo into the regular season.
If the 49ers are unable to trade Garoppolo, the most-logical scenario is that they would hold onto him until the team cuts to the regular-season limit of 53 players on Aug. 30.