Alex Smith is “just staying ready”


The last time the 49ers beat the Packers, Alex Smith was the quarterback.  The last time the 49ers played in the divisional round (and won), Alex Smith was the quarterback.

So as the 49ers prepare to face the Packers in the divisional round of the playoffs, Alex Smith is not the quarterback.

But he’s prepared to play in the event new starter Colin Kaepernick gets injured.  “For me, it’s just about being ready to go,” Smith told reporters on Thursday, via Cam Inman of Bay Area News Group.  “My responsibility is to know the game plan and be ready.   You never know when your opportunity is going to come.  The good ones are ready when it does.”

Indeed, Kaepernick was ready when his opportunity came.  And he played well enough to take the job from Smith.

For Smith, the opportunity will come on Saturday only if Kaepernick gets injured; it’s highly unlikely he’ll be benched.

“Physically, he’s a tremendous player, a guy that has a strong arm and can make all the throws,” Smith said regarding Kaepernick.  “What jumps out to me is how fast he can process things mentally.  He’s done a great job playing fast.  I see more confidence from him, especially in times where it’s grey and indecision.  He makes a decision and goes with it.”

Sort of like what Jim Harbaugh did when making the decision to switch to Kaepernick.  Whether that decision is deemed to be a success in the short term will hinge on whether Kaepernick can do what Smith did against the Packers in Week One, and against the Saints in last year’s divisional round of the playoffs.

13 responses to “Alex Smith is “just staying ready”

  1. People can say what they want about his quaterbacking abilities but this guy is one of the classiest and most professional guy in the league.

  2. I am, and probably always will be an Alex fan. And did not take well his being replaced. However, I understand it. And ironically, I think if Alex still does not yet know the root cause of the QB change, he should read his own words hereon, especially the parts about decision making, and “….how fast he can process things mentally…” – those two specifics that cost Alex his job.

  3. Not a fan of either team, really.
    I was kind of a fan of the 9ers last season, not least because of the Alex Smith “redemption” storyline.

    Not so much this year. Don’t really pull for the Packers, and I have nothing against Kaepernick, but I find myself hoping that the karmic wheel turns on Harbaugh in this round.

  4. There’s not enough balance on that Packers team to beat the 49ers, regardless of who they start at QB. Green Bay has too many holes in their game (defense, offensive line). San Fran is strong in every facet of the game. Ultimately, the strongest overall team generally wins in the playoffs. Balance is king. And the 49ers are just consistently better on both sides of all the ball.

    Although as a Seahawk fan, I’m really rooting for Green Bay because our team would be absolutely jacked out of their minds to go into Lambeau and destroy that team. I think the emotional boost from that could carry the Seahawks to a SuperBowl win, but meh… San Fran’s too consistently good. I’m not counting on the Packers this weekend. The only way they win is through luck.

  5. There is one thing Kaepernick cannot prepare with….he has never played on a post-season stage before. Any player that has can explain the benefits of having done so. Packers 27, San Francisco 17.

  6. Sometimes we we look up to professional athletes for all the wrong reasons. Alex gives us real good reasons to root for him as a person and athlete. There would be immense entertainment value in seeing him come into a game that is on the line during these playoffs and leading the Niners to victory. The emotion, the drama, the feel good story is too good of a script to put down.

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