The New England Patriots traded away Jimmy Garoppolo, a potential franchise quarterback who was backing up arguably the best quarterback to ever play the position in Tom Brady, and Bill Belichick expressed remorse Tuesday that that dream scenario couldn't have lasted longer in Foxborough.
Belichick explained that the Patriots had "explored every option possible to try and sustain" their depth chart with Garoppolo and starting quarterback Tom Brady, but retaining both eventually was no longer viable.
Belichick praised Garoppolo, whom he drafted in the second round in 2014. It wasn't until Brady was suspended for the first four games of the 2016 season that Garoppolo saw extended playing time.
This story will be updated. He's completed 67 percent of his passes and averaged 7.3 yards per attempt with five touchdowns and no interceptions. The 32-year-old backed up Brady for the Patriots from 2009-11, appearing in 13 games and making no starts. I met with him weekly.
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Belichick wouldn't expand on the private conversations that took place pertaining to the transaction, nor would he share what was discussed with the individual players. I would not count anything out with Malcolm Butler right now - he's gonna test the market next year, no question, but if he doesn't like the offers that are out there, I absolutely could see a scenario where he returns to the Patriots.
With no viable option to replace Cousins, it's hard to imagine the Redskins allowing him to walk via free agency, but somehow they've managed to allow it to get this far, which never should have happened in the first place. In addition, the 49ers were seen as one of the favorites to land quarterback Kirk Cousins, if he were to part ways with the Redskins, in free agency next offseason.
Of course, that will likely never come to pass with the trade. As it turned out, they were saving up because they're going to pay Garoppolo a lot of money next year. And it was going to be an easy 4-0. Garoppolo won two Super Bowl rings for the Patriots. The Patriots are thinking this through and through.
There aren't usually bombshells on a Monday, but the New England Patriots dropped one on the entire league.
Matt Citak is a producer for CBS Local Sports and a proud Vanderbilt alum.
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