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NFL Notes: Jimmy Garoppolo, Bears, Browns, Patriots

Jimmy Garoppolo

  • Mike Reiss of ESPN expects the Patriots to assess the potential trade market for backup QB Jimmy Garoppolo at this year’s Scouting Combine.
  • Reiss believes the Patriots and HC Bill Belichick still don’t know what they’ll elect to do with Garoppolo in the coming months simply because they don’t know what teams will be willing to part with to get him in a trade.
  • Even so, Reiss doesn’t sense that there’s a lot of urgency to trade Garoppolo from New England and it will likely take a strong offer of at least a first-round pick for the Pats to part ways with him.

Bears

  • Brad Biggs reports that the Bears are expected to hire Derius Swinton as their assistant special teams coach.

Browns

  • Mary Kay Cabot of the Cleveland Plain Dealer believes the Browns’ first choice at quarterback right now would be to acquire Jimmy Garoppolo in a trade with the Patriots.
  • From there, Cabot could see Cleveland taking a look at guys like Tyrod Taylor, Mike Glennon, and Tony Romo among others.
  • If the Browns want to add a quarterback prospect, Cabot mentions that the more she watch UNC’s Mitch Trubisky and speaks to people around the league about him, the most she believes they should consider using the No. 1 overall pick on him.
  • Cabot expects the Browns to upgrade their offensive line.

Patriots

  • According to Mike Reiss of ESPN, the only tag he could see the Patriots using on free agent LB Dont’a Hightower is the transition tag. This would cost the Patriots around $11 million and give them the right of first refusal should Hightower sign an offer with another team.
  • Reiss considers the franchise tag to be too high for Hightower at $14.5 million – $15 million or so. Beyond that, Reiss mentions that this could create a situation where Hightower has more leverage in extension talks with the Patriots, considering that they would have committed to paying him over $14 million for one season.
  • Reiss mentions that Patriots WR Danny Amendola, won’t return at his current base salary of $6 million for the 2017 season.