With the 49ers in desperate need of a quarterback and Baker Mayfield no longer committed, are the two sides on a collision course?
After the Carolina Panthers released the former No. 1 pick on monday morning, san francisco immediately heated up its pursuit of mayfield as it deals with another devastating quarterback injury.
On Sunday, Jimmy Garoppolo — who was never supposed to be a starter in 2022 before second-year QB Trey Lance got hurt — was injured at the end of the season, Broke his leg during San Francisco’s 33-17 win over the Dolphins. Backup Brock Purdy came in and played admirably, completing 25 of 37 passes for 210 yards, two touchdowns and an interception, but Purdy, the last pick of the 2022 draft in the seventh round, is this year’s “Mr. Irrelevant.”
The 49ers (8-4) are a playoff team, and while Mayfield has gotten worse every year since his promising start to his career, he still has playoff experience and could lead the Browns to their only playoff win of this century in 2020. brought
Whether the 49ers take a shot at Mayfield is another question. Mayfield now goes on waivers, and San Francisco is 24th on the waiver wire — meaning 23 teams have an advantage if they want to claim him.
The 49ers are the only contending team with a clear need at quarterback, but their division rival, the Rams, are running Bryce Perkins and John Wolford under center and have a fourth-down advantage. The Saints, Colts, Falcons and Jets are ahead of San Francisco with varying degrees of quarterback uncertainty, but there’s no reason to think they’ll be interested.
Whichever team claims Mayfield owes him the remaining $1.3 million on his contract NFL Network. That would likely preclude one of the fringe teams from signing him; The 49ers have more than $6 million in cap space, Over The Cap per head.
If Mayfield ends up with San Francisco, he will reunite with Carolina teammate Christian McCaffrey before the Panthers send him to the 49ers for a draft pick.
The 49ers released Josh Johnson from the Broncos’ practice squad following Garoppolo’s injury.