With Jimmy Garoppolo benched, here’s a look back at the now-convoluted Patriots trade

Henry McKenna
·2 min read

The Jimmy Garoppolo trade is among the most-scrutinized decisions under New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick. The man who rarely loses a trade seemed to do the San Francisco 49ers a favor by shipping off Garoppolo for a second-round pick. There were rumblings that the Cleveland Browns offered a much more sizable package, which begged the question as to why Belichick didn’t take the best offer.

With years of separation, the trade is coming into clearer focus. The 49ers removed Garoppolo from Sunday’s game in an effort to protect his healthy, which many saw as a benching. It was a strange sight. This isn’t to say Garoppolo’s run in San Francisco is finished. But perhaps his future with the organization is growing more complicated.

The Patriots, meanwhile, have spun the second-round pick from the Garoppolo trade into so many pieces that it’s not easy to show what, exactly, Belichick got in return. But Yahoo’s Eric Edholm broke it down. He included all the pieces of the deal. Keep in mind that the Patriots had to trade away additional assets to acquire some of the players who were a product of this deal. But it’s a fascinating web to follow.

It’s unfair to proclaim the Patriots winners. Garoppolo got the 49ers to the Super Bowl in 2019. And, again, New England traded him for what appeared to be less-than-market rate. But it is impressive that Belichick managed to spin the second-round pick into so many contributors. It’s a convoluted trade — and a fascinating one.

There’s still plenty of time for it to tip one way or another.