Quarterback Alex Smith being on this list is a little unfair because the former Utah Utes signal-caller actually had himself quite a nice run in San Francisco later in his career.
Those years, of course, were under then-head coach Jim Harbaugh in 2011 and into the first half of 2012 before Smith suffered a concussion midway through the season, which led to quarterback Colin Kaepernick taking over the starting job en route to Super Bowl XLVII.
Yet Smith’s first years after being selected No. 1 overall in the 2005 NFL Draft were nothing short of disastrous. Granted, the Niners were terrible both before and after making Smith the top choice in that year’s draft.
And while the “what could have been?” crowd continues to ponder the 49ers taking Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers instead of Smith, one can also wonder if Rodgers would have experienced a lot of the same issues Smith endured: a poor offensive line, no receiving targets, a slew of different offensive coordinators, etc.
Regardless, Smith went from being a Heisman contender and promising rookie to being benched, albeit due to injury, in favor of a swarm of unknowns at quarterback: Tim Rattay, Cody Pickett and J.T. O’Sullivan, just to name a few to make Niners fans cringe a bit.
Smith at least resurrected what was looking to be a complete bust of an NFL career, yet the length of which it took to get to that point means he has to land on this list.