Dan Graziano reached out to NFL executives, coaches, and agents, asking about two quarterbacks—Baker Mayfield of the Cleveland Browns and Jimmy Garoppolo of the San Francisco 49ers. The Browns have a mess on their hands. They pulled off a blockbuster trade for Deshaun Watson, and the legal issues continue to pile on the talented quarterback. Mayfield, scorned, wants out and is unlikely to do the Browns any favors.

“The Garoppolo situation has been less messy, other than the surgery,” one NFL executive told Graziano. “That makes you think, once he’s healthy, San Francisco has the better chance to get something done.”

Nothing is certain, though. The number of quarterback-needy teams has been significantly reduced since March, when Garoppolo underwent shoulder surgery, halting all trade talks.

The Carolina Panthers remain a possibility. Although, they are reportedly in no rush to take on the veteran quarterback’s hefty salary.

San Francisco would like to avoid releasing Garoppolo, allowing him to sign with the division-rival Seattle Seahawks while the Niners receive nothing in return. However, something will need to be done before Week 1.

“As it stands now, San Francisco could cut Garoppolo and take on only $1.4 million in dead money against his salary cap,” Graziano explains. “If it waits until after Week 1 to cut him, that number would jump to $26.4 million.”

What is the most likely outcome for Garoppolo and Mayfield?

“The majority of the people to whom I spoke for this story believe both players will likely end up being released,” Graziano shared. “A couple of people thought Garoppolo might still draw trade interest, provided an acquiring team could work out something to knock down the salary or spread it out over a couple of years.”

Graziano says the Panthers remain the most popular destination for Garoppolo, should the 49ers manage to pull off a trade instead. The ESPN writer also mentions the Seahawks and Atlanta Falcons as possibilities. However, neither will likely consider the quarterbacks if they aren’t released.

“The Browns and 49ers likely hope other teams’ situations change and the market widens,” Graziano added. “Perhaps a quarterback suffers an injury at the position, and they can do something like the Eagles did in 2016 when they feel Sam Bradford to the Vikings right before the season when Teddy Bridgewater got hurt. Perhaps a team that feels good about its quarterback situation gets into camp and that changes, then revisits the idea of ​​a trade.”

Then you have the worst-case scenario submitted to Graziano by one of those with whom he had discussions.

“Why not trade them for each other?” the individual suggested. “San Fran saves some money, Cleveland gets a better backup option than [Jacoby] Brissett. Baker gets to work with Kyle [Shanahan] for a year and be next year’s [Mitchell] Trubisky.”