Reports of the Denver Broncos trading for the services of a new quarterback intensified after presumptive starter Brock Osweiler departed for the Houston Texans — several of those reports linked embattled 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick as a possible trade candidate for general manger John Elway.
However, after reports that San Francisco general manager Trent Baalke was seeking a second-round pick as compensation for the 27-year-old, and that Elway was only willing to part with a third-round pick, the Broncos announced Friday they had traded a conditional 2017 late-round draft pick to the Philadelphia Eagles for quarterback Mark Sanchez.
Sanchez joins the Broncos as the only quarterback on the depth chart besides Trevor Siemian, a 2015 seventh-round pick, who has never thrown a pass in regular season play. At age 29, Sanchez has appeared in 13 games in the past two seasons, all under then-head coach Chip Kelly. During the 2014 season, Sanchez completed 64.1 percent of his passes for 2,418 yards in nine games with 14 touchdowns and 11 interceptions.
Elway took to Twitter on Friday afternoon, suggesting his team’s search for a quarterback might not be finished.
(Sanchez) “brings veteran leadership and will compete,” Elway said. “This is the first step in our process.”
Meanwhile, Kaepernick remains a member of the 49ers. Denver’s second-round pick comes in at No. 63 overall — the Cleveland Browns, whom Kaepernick has reportedly stated interest in, possess a third-round pick at No. 65 overall. The New York Jets have also reportedly expressed interest in acquiring Kaepernick, and are exploring multiple other options in the event they cannot re-sign Ryan Fitzpatrick.
One of the options for the Jets is recently released Redskins quarterback, Robert Griffin III, who is scheduled to visit with the team, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter. Griffin has also been speculated as an option for Chip Kelly’s offense with the 49ers, should the team trade Kaepernick. The 26-year-old Griffin was inactive for every game last season and served as third-string for the Redskins. In 2012, he rushed for the seventh-most yards by a quarterback in league history and ranked third in the NFL in passer rating en route to being named the Offensive Rookie of the Year.
All of this being said, Baalke and the 49ers are in no rush to trade Kaepernick — the NFL Network reported the team is prepared to retain his services, despite the fact his agents asked for a trade last month. The 49ers have made it known to other teams throughout the league that they intent to keep the disgruntled Kaepernick should the compensation not meet their demands. But the 49ers and Browns are in “general agreement” regarding the draft-pick compensation for Kaepernick, according to Mike Silver.
David Barclay is an NFL Insider for byteclay.com. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org, Twitter: @DJamesIII