The New England Patriots asking price for back-up QB Jimmy Garoppolo has increased on a monthly basis, moving from a first-and-fourth, to a first-and-second, and now to a pair of first round picks.
The high asking price has forced the Chicago Bears and San Francisco 49ers to fold, as evidenced by their signings of QB Mike Glennon and QB Brian Hoyer, respectively. The Cleveland Browns, however, are about to go all in, per Cleveland.com’s Mary Kay Cabot.
“The Browns have the ammunition to acquire Jimmy Garoppolo and will try to put together a strong package that the Patriots will accept,” Cabot writes. “The Browns have two first-round picks and two second-rounders this year, and now three second-round picks in 2018. The Browns will likely be willing to part with their No. 12 overall pick this year for Garoppolo, and at least one of the second-round picks next year.”
The Browns just acquired a 2018 second round pick from the Houston Texans in exchange for eating the contract of QB Brock Osweiler. Cleveland has been stocking up on draft picks in addition to their own first and second round picks in the 2017 and 2018 NFL Drafts. They also own the Philadelphia Eagles first round pick in 2017 and second round pick in 2018, along with the Tennessee Titans second round pick in 2017 and the Texans second round pick in 2018.
That’s a ton of draft capital.
While the Patriots want a pair of first round picks, the Browns are reluctant to part with such valuable capital. Instead, they’re interested in packaging their latter first round pick in 2017 (12th overall) with one or two of their second round picks in 2018.
Per the draft value chart, a pair of average second round picks is roughly equivalent to the 20th overall pick in the draft. The Patriots would probably like the Browns to send the best two of their second round picks to avoid the risk of having to guess how teams will play in 2017.
Cabot notes that the Patriots want the 1st overall pick because “there are some top five players they want, whereas the No. 12 doesn’t interest them as much,” which frankly sounds ridiculous. It’s like the Patriots aren’t even pretending to be unsure. We only want a top five player, Bill Belichick is saying. We aren’t interested in the six-through-twelve ranked players.
But the negotiation tactic worked and the Browns are scurrying around to meet the demands of the Patriots. Let’s see if the Patriots will actually ship Garoppolo to Cleveland for an incredibly handsome price.