49ers coach Jim Harbaugh’s first two seasons with the team have provided a twist on the time-honored formula for a big-screen love story. Instead of boy meets girl, boy loses girl, boy gets girl again, it’s been boy meets girl, boy publicly professes love for girl, boy evaluates second girl, boy professes love again for first girl, boy meets third girl, boy tries to date both as long as he can before kicking first girl to the curb.
The Niners’ version of Girl No. 1, quarterback Alex Smith, reacted on Thursday to the reality that, while he’s still one of Harbaugh’s guys, he’s no longer “the guy.”
“I mean, it sucks,” Smith said, via Matt Maiocco of CSNBayArea.com. “I don’t know what else to say.”
There’s nothing more to say. Except, maybe, “This is why players hide concussions.”
Smith didn’t say that. But everyone is thinking it. When Smith told trainers during a Week 10 game against the Rams that he was experiencing blurry vision after being hit in the head, Smith set in motion a chain of events that could ultimately cost him a shot at earning a Super Bowl ring and $7.5 million in 2012 compensation.
So, yeah, it sucks. Even though Harbaugh made what he believes to be the best decision for the present and future of the franchise.
UPDATE 4:03 p.m. ET: Actually, Smith came close to saying “this is why players hide concussions.” According to Eric Branch of the San Francisco Chronicle, Smith also said, “I feel like the only thing I did to lose my job was get a concussion.”