Indianapolis Colts: Jimmy Garoppolo’s Alarming Red Flag Kept Him From Joining Indy

After the Atlanta Falcons missed out on acquiring star quarterback Deshaun Watson, the franchise quickly moved on from Matt Ryan. The Indianapolis Colts swooped into the picture to land the former league MVP to effectively replace Carson Wentz.

Before the Colts landed Ryan, the team had a few other options, headlined by Baker Mayfield’s strong desire to play with the franchise. The list of names included Jimmy Garoppolo, but Indianapolis chose not to pursue the San Francisco 49ers quarterback for what the franchise believed was a red flag reason.

Colts acquire Matt Ryan

After trading Carson Wentz, the Colts were left with a gaping hole to fill under center before the 2022 season.

Indianapolis didn’t waste much time resolving that dilemma by trading for Pro Bowl quarterback Matt Ryan. The franchise offloaded a 2022 third-round draft pick to acquire the 36-year-old. The Colts are also taking on the final two years of his deal, worth roughly $53.9 million.

Ryan is coming off a tough 2021 campaign, where he recorded 3,968 passing yards with 20 touchdowns to 12 interceptions and held a 90.4 passer rating. He will take over the helm as the starter for the foreseeable future in Indianapolis.

Before the Colts ventured the route of landing Ryan, the team turned down the chance to land Jimmy Garoppolo for a specific reason.

Jimmy Garoppolo’s alarming red flag kept him from joining the Indianapolis Colts

The Colts’ quick movement toward landing Ryan came to little surprise, given the Falcons’ desire to move out from his massive remaining contract.

The trade also overshadowed the lingering Jimmy Garoppolo dilemma plaguing the San Francisco 49ers. The 49ers have yet to find a suitable landing spot for the veteran quarterback that will give him the chance to reignite his career.

The Colts were among the franchises that could have swooped in to acquire Garoppolo, but the team held its reservations. According to ESPN’s Diana Russini, Indianapolis reportedly viewed the 30-year-old’s shoulder surgery as a “Red flag” because it would limit him in the offseason.

“From what I was told, there were concerns over the shoulder injury,” Russini tweeted. “Not so much the medical side of it but the idea of missing time in the offseason with a new team. This was a red flag.”

That isn’t to say that every team holds the Colts’ vantage point, but it’s a reasonable stance. Garoppolo underwent surgery on March 8 to repair a torn capsule in his throwing shoulder. The recovery process will keep him from throwing for four months, forcing him to miss OTAs and minicamp.

Garoppolo should be able to begin throwing again by late June and be ready for the start of the 2022 season. Nonetheless, the shortened offseason due to surgery didn’t help his case to land with at least one other team that desperately needed quarterback help.

Jimmy Garoppolo’s NFL future remains uncertain

As much as the 49ers want to maintain an optimistic approach, the list of landing spots is growing smaller.

Several teams, such as the Colts, Falcons, Cleveland Browns, Denver Broncos, Washington Commanders, and New Orleans Saints, have addressed their quarterback situations. Beyond the 49ers’ lack of desire to trade within the division, the Seattle Seahawks may be off the table due to rolling with Drew Locke.

The Seahawks could also be eyeing to pursue Baker Mayfield instead, given his age and team-friendly remaining rookie contract. The Houston Texans or Carolina Panthers could attempt to trade for Garoppolo, but there hasn’t been any movement.

Meanwhile, the 49ers hold no urgency to trade Garoppolo yet, as the team could use the upcoming draft as leverage for a franchise wanting an established talent than an unproven quarterback. San Francisco could hold onto him through the 2022 season and move entirely in a new direction next offseason.

Time will tell, but it’s clear that San Francisco is willing to patiently let it all play out.

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