A creative Baker Mayfield trade suggestion could solve multiple concerns

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The Cleveland Browns and QB Baker Mayfield seem headed for a divorce but that has been true since the team acquired QB Deshaun Watson over two months ago. Since then, the NFL draft has come and gone with a majority of major moves in the NFL having also been completed.

Yet, a week into June, Mayfield remains on the Browns roster and we are no closer to knowing what the conclusion of this saga will be. The simplest solution, a trade with the Carolina Panthers, fizzled out on draft night leaving very limited simple options.

That brings us to another quarterback whose future is up in the air: Jimmy Garoppolo. The San Fransisco 49ers traded up (using a similar trade package as the one used by the Browns to acquire Watson) to acquire Trey Lance in the 2021 draft. With one season left on his contract and coming off surgery, Garoppolo’s future in the Bay area is in doubt.

Ben Volin of the Boston Globe suggested a simple swap of the two in-limbo quarterbacks:

For the Niners, acquiring a solid backup that can start while saving about $7 million to use toward a Deebo Samuel contract makes sense. Acquiring a quarterback who has hopes for starting but would be expected to begin as Lance’s backup could be concerning.

For the Browns, losing cap space to bring in a quarterback expected to be the backup doesn’t make a ton of sense unless the team believes Watson will be suspended for most or all of the 2022 season.

Mayfield for Garoppolo would end two of the biggest quarterback questions from this offseason while giving Cleveland more insurance but seems unlikely on both sides even if it is interesting.