With Josh McDaniels now having been fired out in Las Vegas, it’s hard not to wonder if that move might have an impact on what we may see happen here in New England moving forward at quarterback.
The now-former Raiders head coach brought in former Patriots quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo this past offseason, with the hope that Garoppolo could stabilize things under center in the desert. The two obviously had success together in New England, so seeing them reunited there seemed to make sense.
Unfortunately, that didn’t quite work out as planned. Garoppolo has continued dealing with a variety of injuries, which is a continuation of the problems he had less than 600 miles from the team he used to play for in San Francisco. As a result, the Raiders find themselves at 3-5, and now McDaniels is out of the picture with nine games still left to play.
The Raiders are already reportedly set to bench Garoppolo in favor of Aidan O’Connell, which likely has the writing on the wall for the veteran quarterback depending on how that plays out.
Here in New England, we all know Bill Belichick had a pretty good affinity for the former Eastern Illinois quarterback, having drafted him in round two back in 2014. Garoppolo got right to work after being drafted, often being spotted at the stadium with his head buried in the playbook, and had Tom Brady not continued playing at a high level, Garoppolo had once seemed to be the guy who might one day replace him.
Obviously, that didn’t happen, but it’s probably better to attribute that to bad timing than anything Garoppolo did or didn’t do.
Garoppolo had two solid outings for the Patriots during Tom Brady’s 2016 four-game suspension to start the year, with the young quarterback seeing that stint cut short after suffering a shoulder injury early in his second start.
That play happened with just five minutes left in the first half against Miami, with Garoppolo marching the offense down the field yet again after building a 14-0 lead.
With the way things were going, it looked like he was about to end up with a rout over the Dolphins in his first home start at Gillette Stadium. Instead, a shot from Kiko Alonso following a 15-yard completion to Malcolm Mitchell ended his day, with Garoppolo suffering an injury to his throwing shoulder.
That play proved to be his final regular-season throw as a Patriot and he was traded the following October to the 49ers, with New England bringing back Brian Hoyer to back up Brady after San Francisco also released him following the deal.
Given New England’s issues on their quarterback depth chart behind Mac Jones, the odds may be pretty good that should Garoppolo eventually get released, they may explore bringing him back to add a veteran presence to the quarterback room.
To this point, they haven’t had that following the departure of Hoyer this past offseason, and the odds of bringing him back probably aren’t very good after several reporters have indicated that he and the Patriots didn’t exactly end things on good terms.
The only question would likely be the salary Garoppolo might demand and whether or not he’d want to come back here. But given Belichick’s admiration for him and the lack of options he may have should his season continue to go poorly these next nine weeks, it’s possible that a shot at rejuvenating his career here in New England might be his best option.
If that ends up being the case, it’s possible things could finally line up for Garoppolo’s return. And maybe the timing finally works out for him to start here should the Patriots make a tough decision to potentially move on from Mac Jones at some point in the future.
Posted Under: Patriots News
Tags: Jimmy Garoppolo