BOSTON (CBS) — Who knew that Jimmy Garoppolo’s Instagram page could create such drama in the Boston sports scene?

Last week, Jimmy’s peace sign picture sent fans and media into a frenzy trying to figure out what it meant. And overnight between Thursday and Friday, a much more direct message seemed to indicate that Garoppolo had been traded.

But with several prominent NFL reporters insisting that no trade had been completed, and with the Instagram post not being taken down for at least several hours after its posting, speculation continued to rule the day.

To help answer some questions, Toucher & Rich welcomed the Boston Herald’s Jeff Howe on Friday’s program. Howe said that there’s just no way that Garoppolo would have been tipped off to an impending trade by the Patriots. That’s not the way they do business.

“I would be shocked if the Patriots told Garoppolo, ‘Look, it’s close, and you might be on the way out today or tomorrow.’ That’s just not how the Patriots do business,” Howe said. “If they’re going to trade a guy, they blindside him just like they blindside everybody else. There’s no courtesy of, ‘Hey you know what, it’s been fun, but your time might be coming to an end in the next 48 hours.'”

Howe referred to a couple of his comments from the crazy day that was Thursday, a day that included rumors of a Malcolm Butler-Brandin Cooks trade.

“When have the Patriots ever made a trade and have the negotiations of a trade start to get leaked beforehand? It never happens,” Howe said. “Whether it’s a superstar, big name, outgoing, incoming, or just a role player … these negotiations don’t get leaked. The trade just happens. The Patriots don’t tell one cornerback if another cornerback is injured. They keep everything so secretive that they’re not just broadcasting this. If they’re going to trade Garoppolo, they’re not telling Garoppolo. They might not even be telling Garoppolo’s agent.”

While the speculation is sure to continue, Howe stated, “The Patriots would be more than happy to keep Garoppolo.”

“I’ve heard them say they know how difficult it is to find a quarterback, and they feel fortunate that they have two,” he added. “And they’ve obviously had Brady for nearly two decades at this point. But it took a while, and a cycle through a number of guys, before they happened upon Garoppolo and developed him over the course of his first three seasons. So they feel fortunate in that respect.”

Unlike Adam Schefter, who steadfastly refuses to acknowledge any possibility of a Garoppolo trade, Howe said one could still happen if a team were willing to shell out a monster package. But from the Patriots’ perspective, having insurance for their 40-year-old quarterback in 2017 (and 41-year-old quarterback in 2018) is not a bad thing to have.

Listen to the full interview below:


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