Time for the 49ers to Lock Up Alex Smith

At the end of last season Alex Smith seemed relieved that his stay was coming to an end. Personally I like Alex, but I could not imagine a good situation for him with the 49ers. In 2005, he would enter the league with a lack luster one touchdown and eleven interceptions. It would be a rocky situation for the next six years. The end of 2010-2011 season, Alex was being shown the door as fans boo’s echoed throughout the stadium.

It was hard for fans to accept when Jim Harbaugh said clearly that Alex was the quarterback he wanted. Even for fans like myself who supported Smith, wanted to see him move on and be successful. It wasn’t hard for critics to roll their eyes when camp Alex happened. Then Michael Crabtree added some fuel to the fire, when he said to a reporter that he didn’t see a starting quarterback.

Everyone held their breath when the season started. Critics would clearly announce that the 49ers could be a good team if they would only ditch Alex Smith. It wasn’t until the 49ers were 4-1 that people began to question if Smith’s lack of production from the beginning may have had something to do with poor coaching, and sub par talent around him.

Now as the 49ers stand atop the NFC west at 6-1, ranked number two in the NFL, with only one team carrying a better record, Alex Smith is just now escaping the label of bust. It is for that reason I say it is time to lock up Alex with a three year contract. Right now he is playing under a one year five million dollar contract. It would be in the best interest to extend his contract, before the 49ers reach the preseason. Of course Alex and his agent might be seeing an opportunity also, he is proving that he is a real NFL quarterback, and there are several teams out there who would pick up Alex. The advantage is that Alex is thriving under Harbaugh, and he went to high school just up the road.

On the flip side, if we sign Alex, and the 49ers land a better quarterback, or if he struggles, then he will sit the bench, and do what he has always done well, come off the bench and finish losing games. No matter what happens, 49ers fans can find comfort in the fact that Harbaugh will do what is best for the 49ers and find a way to win.

Topics: 49ers Contract Negotiation, Alex Smith, Contract, Contract Status, Jared Quan

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  • michaelwhite

    well, you’re right. Alex is doing exactly what Harbaugh needs him to do to win in his game plan. It just might be possible that no one else could do what he does.

  • jmbice

    Absolutely right to offer him a contract, I might even say longer than 3 years. Here is why: If Alex Smith proves himself to be a very effective NFL Quarterback, the 49ers are better off having him under contract so that they may trade him for additional draft picks in say 2-3 years. I expect Alex will continue to grow as a quarterback over the next couple years under Harbaugh. I expect he will be come very different from the Smith we thought we knew.

    In the meantime, hopefully Kaepernick is developing in the wings, ready to take over Smith’s reign if he is so deserving… (what a beast of an athlete).

    note: If they do sign a contract with Alex, I hope he reaps a worthy financial rewarded for this season. He should no longer be punished for seasons (and coaches) gone by…

  • Sniper49er

    I am skepical of Alex, but you hit this one on the nose. Alex is playing well, and is forming some real trade value. I am excited to see Alex playing under Jims full playbook.

  • jaredquan

    I think Harbaugh is rooting for Alex. He took him on and championed him as his quarterback. I don’t see anything that would change that. Jim may be looking at the long view, and I would be that means signing Alex for a 5 year deal. As long as Jim keeps working the talent on the team I see a great future for the 49ers, I don’t think he will change his formula for success.

  • gwebisu

    In addition, Alex running the training camp during the summer gave the Niners a big head start. The players like Vernon D and Frank G always supported Alex, even over Singletary. No one else could have done it and brought the players together during the lockout. Props again to Harbaugh for making the bold choice that seemed crazy at the time.

  • Sniper49er

    After watching Sunays performance against the Redskins, I can’t imagin the 49ers letting Alex leave. At 7-1 the 49ers are almost guarnteed a playoff spot. Alex thre a couple of long passes that looked good. It was tragic VD could not pull in that long pass. It was right where it needed to be. I am a little less skeptical of Alex than I was before.

  • jmbice

    Unfortunately I had to miss the game for work…

    …but even last week, I was to the point of thinking Alex has the playing ability to win a super bowl. He is making excellent decisions this year during the game. Before the hike (audibles) and after the hike with his play. He isn’t rattled easily. If he does get rattled, he can bounce back to deliver both game winning throws and drives. And Gwebishu is absolutely right, Alex has shown tremendous leadership this year in training camp. Team offensive leaders Gore and Davis have defended him publicly for the last couple years. As MichaelWhite pointed out, we’re just beginning to understand the role Alex plays on the team. Fortunately they are winning. I think victory is also giving Alex the confidence to understand his role in the offense: “I don’t care [about stats]. I execute plays.” -ASmith, postgame interview

    The 49ers have a very deep playbook, I think teams are going to be very surprised by what they see in the closing weeks of the season and in the post season in terms of creativity and execution from the offense. This is my instinct given Edward’s allusions after the game, and Harbaugh’s infamously large playbook at Stanford, and comments by offensive coordinator on the 49ers tv network…oh and the already creative play calling that has somehow come through on the field in games where the niners are playing with a lead.

    Let’s hope the offense can tighten and execute better down the stretch. If they can do that they will earn respect…and postseason success.

  • Sniper49er

    One of the things I noticed was how big and extensive the wrist band Alex wears with plays listed on it, and that is only half the plays. I am impressed with the audible calling, it seems that he is making adjustments almost every play. This is a dramatic improvement from Alex of old.