There were rumors that the San Francisco 49ers quarterback Alex Smith was looking to move on from the team and find a new home. Smith denied those rumors saying that he didn’t know where that notion came from but it started a whirlwind of will he be traded, will he be released and where will he end up?
But San Francisco 49ers CEO Jed York addressed the quarterback conundrum while making the rounds at the famed “radio row” of the Super Bowl media circus.
“I hope he’s with us,” York said, via PFT. “From a cap standpoint, we have the room to be able to keep him. One quarterback is usually not enough to get you through a season. And to have two guys which the Niners had in Steve [Young] and Joe [Montana] for a long time, there’s no reason why you can’t have two guys on your team. And I hope we can find a way to make that happen.”
There certainly will be demand for Alex Smith and we’ve already seen how desperate their divisional foes in Arizona were. The 49ers aren’t strangers to having 2 quarterbacks as York said. But eventually they parted ways with Joe Montana who went to the Kansas City Chiefs.
But Alex Smith said he hasn’t requested to be traded or released despite speculation.
“He hasn’t made the request yet, and that’s something we’ll assess at end of the season,” York said. “I think Alex has been very clear, he’s been very up front, he’s been very professional throughout this whole thing. And he’s still a captain of the 49ers. And I think Alex deserves the opportunity and figure out what he wants to do at the end of the season.”
Its almost an unwritten rule that you aren’t supposed to lose your job to injury but it certainly isn’t the first time it happened. Tom Brady came in for an injured Drew Bledsoe and never gave up the starting spot. Ben Roethlisberger had a similar experience coming in after Charlie Batch and Tommy Maddox were injured.
“I don’t know that I would say Alex lost his job due to injury,” York said. “I think Kaep stepped up and played. And he got his opportunity and he took the most of his opportunity. It’s easy to say, ‘Well he lost his job because of injury.’ That’s not necessarily the case. And you need to understand that if you do go out there and play with a concussion, you might lose your career. And whether Alex is playing for us or he’s playing somewhere else next year, Alex has another 10 to 15 years to play in the National Football League because he was safe and he didn’t put himself in a position where he ended his career early.”
It seems though in York’s denial he almost confirms it. Kaepernick “took the most of his opportunity?” That opportunity was because Smith was injured. Smith got penalized for following the NFL’s concussion protocol’s in essence and he could wind up with a very bittersweet Super Bowl ring.