So we’ve all seen the sad story that is the Alex Smith saga. The young quarterback for the San Francisco 49ers finally had an incredible season in 2011, albeit as a dreaded “game manager,” and led the franchise to the NFC Championship game before losing to the eventual Super Bowl Champion New York Giants. And this season the 49ers added more talent, specifically at wide receiver and Smith was just maybe going to break free from that game manager title as he tried to lead the 49ers to the Super Bowl.
Then in Week 11, he did not play, having suffered a concussion in the week prior. Enter Colin Kaepernick, the 2nd round pick out of Nevada just in his sophomore season with the 49ers. The 49ers and head coach Jim Harbaugh never looked back and now are on the cusp of playing in the Super Bowl for the first time since Super Bowl XXIX.
Since the 49ers have seemingly moved on, Alex Smith seemingly is on his way out of town. He still is signed under contract through 2013 so the 49ers will try to trade him, but if he isn’t moved the 49ers will reportedly release him as a show of respect for how he’s handled the situation
So that had us thinking, where could we possibly see Alex Smith end up?
5. New York Jets
It is highly doubtful that the Jets want to bring in yet another quarterback to their circus, but at the same time they seem to have moved on past Mark Sanchez, benching him late in the season and passing up Tim Tebow in favor of Greg McElroy. Alex Smith is a proven game manager and right now that might be what the Jets need more than an elite quarterback. Someone who can help them win games and turn the ball over. If the Jets can trade either or both Sanchez and Tebow, expect them to take a look at Smith.
4. Jacksonville Jaguars
The Jags drafted Missouri quarterback Blaine Gabbert with the hopes they had found their franchise quarterback. So far he hasn’t lived up to the hype and while the problem might be the team as a whole or the offensive line, you’d have a hard time believing the Jags wouldn’t take a look at Smith. The Jags have said their will be an open QB competition, but are still optimistic about Gabbert’s future realizing he’s young and hasn’t had coaching stability. An issue Smith had to overcome as well.
3. Kansas City Chiefs
The Kansas City Chiefs have Matt Cassell and Brady Quinn in the back field. Niether did much to lock up that position. They could draft Geno Smith with the first pick and try to change with the NFL and follow in the footsteps of the Seattle Seahawks and Washington Redskins. I, however, have them taking a big franchise OT with the first pick. And that would be a great compliment to their new quarterback Alex Smith. This was the worst passing team in the league according to ESPN, averaging 169.6 yards per game. The Chiefs have weapons though and a game manager like Smith could use them. Dwayne Bowe, Steve Breaston, Jammal Charles and Dexter McCluster? This offense could immediately turn around.
2. Arizona Cardinals
The Cardinals started 4 different quarterbacks this season, including one that wasn’t even on the team till they signed him in early December. The Cardinals thought Kevin Kolb was the answer when they acquired him from the Eagles, they were wrong. And the other three they marched out proved to be just as ineffective. The Cardinals are desperate, and Alex Smith would be a quick and proven solution. And the 49ers need a back up to replace Smith in a trade, have your pick of quarterbacks the Cards would be thrilled to give you one, two or even all three. Alex Smith would be ok with coming here for 1 reason: Larry Fitzgerald. But it’d be doubtful that the 49ers would trade them to a divisional rival, they might have to get him after he is released.
1. Buffalo Bills
Ryan Fitzpatrick was long thought to be the answer for the Buffalo Bills but it’s safe to say things aren’t just working out. They have a solid Top-10 ground game, but no passing attack to compliment it. Imagine if Alex Smith was in the back field. And his game manager reputation would be perfect for the Bills, short dump off passes to CJ Spiller? Yes, please. Stevie Johnson hauling in deep balls, and Chandler, and underrated tight end would thrive. The only thing keeping the Bills from making this move is desperation. They aren’t as desperate as some other teams.