All signs were pointing to 49ers quarterback Alex Smith playing Monday night against the Bears.
Key word: Were.
Chris Mortensen of ESPN reports that Smith was unable to get clearance from doctors to suit up against the Bears. Which means that Smith failed the so-called “contact” test that doctors had planned to administer.
Smith had received last week clearance to practice, and he participated in every session in preparation for the game. We were told last night that he intended to play and very much wanted to play.
He wanted to play likely because, at least in part, not playing gives Colin Kaepernick a chance to show what he can do. And if Kaepernick can get it done against the Bears, a quarterback controversy could be coming to San Francisco.