According to Alex Smith, Jim Harbaugh and the 49ers organization they have promised him nothing more than a shot at the starting quarterback job (again). On April 29th, the one day lift on the lockout, Alex spent the day at 49er headquarters going over the offense with the coaching staff while being loaded up with playbooks, practice CD’s, power point presentations and everything he needed to do the coaching staff’s job during the lockout.
To his credit Alex has held not one but two “minicamps” now at San Jose State. Doing everything from securing the facilities, calling and texting the players to get them there, even flying in rookie WR Ronald Johnson and putting him up in a hotel for the week.
Don’t get me wrong, Alex Smith has a better chance than anyone to be the starting quarterback for the 49ers next season. But think about this, Harbaugh convinced Smith to not only basically give up his chance at free agency but openly declaring he’s coming back both verbally and by organizing these camps, all without promising him anything. Now that’s a salesman.
Many veteran quarterbacks could be available and the 49ers certainly could go after one with a one to two year contract offer to compete with Smith for the starting job while grooming Colin Kaepernick for the future. The team will add another QB, maybe two but it will be very interesting to see if they add someone with a real chance to take the job away from Alex Smith. I don’t feel like Jim Harbaugh will show any favoritism towards Smith for the work he has done this offseason. Unlike Mike Nolan and Mike Singletary, Harbaugh seems to be a coach that knows QBs, knows offensive football and every player must earn his spot. Many fans have moaned and groaned (myself included) at the possibility (fact) that Alex Smith will be back with the team this season. I say bravo Jim Harbaugh, you found the perfect summer intern without paying him or promising him anything, and if you turn him into a winning QB you’re a genius if not at least you made the most out of a grim situation.