49ers GM says all options are on the table for Alex Smith


With an incoming rookie class of quarterbacks that no one seems sold on, the 49ers are sitting on an asset in Alex Smith.

And they want to make sure everyone is aware that they control that asset.

When 49ers general manager Trent Baalke was asked about the future of his former starting quarterback, he said he recently had dinner with Smith and his wife, and told him all options were on the table for the team.

But he denied that he was going to give him away.

“Are we going to trade him for sure? No, that hasn’t been decided,” Baalke said.

While the 49ers might want to suggest they’re perfectly happy to keep Colin Kaepernick’s backup (to the tune of $8.5 million), it seems that no reasonable person expects that to happen, and a closer look at college quarterbacks this week is only going to increase the value of a guy who is at least a league-average starter, when many teams don’t have anything approaching that.

47 responses to “49ers GM says all options are on the table for Alex Smith

  1. I think Alex would be a perfect fit in KC. There is an abundance of talent there, and Reid has a way of getting the best out of average QB’s. Unfortunately, it will always be a business, and the niners should do everything they can to get the most out of him. I’m not sure they will get what they are hoping for, but anything is better than nothing. Plus, you trade this guy, and he turns around and wins the SB. You look like idiots. The read option fad ends soon too….

  2. You’ve got to Release the guy
    He’s been a good soldier after losing his job
    (and even before losing it)

    Now let him go find the team he wants

    Good Luck, Alex !!

  3. Just remember, he was a Free Agent last offseason and didn’t get offers from any of the teams looking for a QB. So now, a year later the 49ers are going to get a top pick for him?

    I find that hard to believe.

  4. Alex is the Rodney Dangerfield of QBs. He comes one pass shy of setting the record for completetion % in a game and is now called “league average.” Whatever…

  5. somebody better be very careful giving up anything for Alex Smith it’s funny how a couple good games and people think he’s elite he was honestly a bust and not many people have the niners D or Frank Gore or a one read pass offense that says don’t throw if the WR isn’t open by 5 yards call me crazy but I think it’s foolish and beyond expectations to think this isn’t a tragic FA move in the Rob Johnson or Kevin Kolb mode no first pick gets 8 years to prove he’s average I’d pays all day but I actually watch football and don’t think the niners would have sniffed the SB with him under center

  6. Kap makes less than a million dollars this season. Is it really crazy to think they will keep Alex and Kap to the tune of less than 10 million if they don’t find what they want via trade? I would take those two guys for ten million before i took one Flacco for twenty million.

  7. Andy Reid its your turn to be on the receiving end. Fork over that 2nd rd pick and we’ll call it a day. Niners could get a defensive lineman and a actual #2 wr to rectify their Jenkins mistake within 2 picks of each other

  8. Where Alex lacks in physical ability he makes up for it with mental toughness. Not to mention, he is probably the best teammate a player could have. I hope he lands in a good situation, even if it means backing up Kaepernick next year to see if he is the real deal.
    You never know with this new trend in qb’s (Cam Newton, Kaepernick, Tebow, RG3) defensive coordinators are mini genius’ and seem to do enough to throw athletic guys off of their game long enough for doubt to set in. Thats when forcing the ball and mistakes start. No disrespect, I’m fairly certain this is where the future prototype nfl qb will be (6-5, 230 lbs., 4.4 40 time with a cannon arm). At least the game will be exciting.

  9. Alex Smith seems like a decent guy. However, he’s not the caliber of QB that can carry a weak team.

    If some abysmal franchise pays up for him, they might be in for a surprise.

  10. I could see a team like the Bills or Chiefs picking him up. They’d give the 9ers a high 3rd round pick for him.

    More complicated would be a deal with the Jets and Revis, but not for the kind of money Revis is saying he wants in a new contract.

  11. Alex would be an awfully expensive backup….but then again, Kaepernick is a ridiculously inexpensive starter, so even if they kept both players on the roster, the Niners’ total investment at the QB position would be very manageable.

    You’ve also got to consider the fact that over a sixteen-game schedule, mobile, athletic QB’s like Kaepernick typically miss 2-3 games due to injury (knee sprains, pulled hamstrings, etc.). As such, there’s a very good chance that the Niners’ backup QB will see meaningful playing time and possibly even start a few games.

    So the question becomes….should Kaepernick be sidelined for any period of time, who do you want leading your team: the best backup QB available….or a cheaper (albeit less talented) option?

    (Personally, given the lack of depth at QB in this draft, I’m guessing the Niners will get a trade offer that’s too good to pass up. But if nobody offers up what they feel he’s worth in trade value, don’t be surprised if they just hang onto him for another year.)

  12. Thing is the two most rumored trade partners(KC and Cle) are actually decent spots for Alex. Def better than Arizona.

    Andy Reid runs a west coast offense in KC, the Chiefs have a decent Defense, a fantastic Running game, and if Bowe stays a pretty good WR to throw to.

    In Cleveland you have Norv Turner as Offensive Coordinator who has worked well with Smith in the past, a pretty good RB in Richardson, and I am sure they will be upgrading on D and WR this season too.

    Arizona on the other hand is in a bit of coaching upheavel. I mean Arians did a great job with a rookie QB(though that QB was Luck) but in Arizona the D is good but we will see next season if that is Horton or the talent, the running game isn’t as good as in Cle or KC(which for Alex you kinda need), but on the other hand Larry Fitzgerald is one of the 3 best Receivers in the game.

    So either way all of the likely options for Smith are good for Smith but KC and Cle are the best two for immediate success. Plus the best two cases for the 49ers too.

  13. I am so sick of people saying the Niners should release Smith because he was a good soldier. If anything, Smith owes the Niners. He made tens of millions of dollars when he didn’t produce squat on the field. He would probably be out of the league if Harbaugh didn’t put him in the proper offense and give him the coaching to succeed.

    Football is a buisness, the Niners will do the right thing for the TEAM and get the most they can for Alex in a trade.

  14. What are “Things you say before you release someone due to cap space and no one is stupid enough to trade for him”?

  15. Have to remember how the Camel got the starting job in the first place. Or how most young quarterbacks get their chance at starting. Injury to the incumbent. Kaepernick scooting around on those toothpick legs doesn’t exactly look like he will threaten Brett Favre’s ironman streak.

  16. logicalvoicesays says:
    Feb 21, 2013 11:02 AM
    Who cares about the mediocre 49ers? Alex Smith isn’t even better than Rex Grossman either.

    -Just out of curiosity, what makes you think the 9ers are “mediocre”? Is it making it as far as the conference championship one year, then the Super Bowl the next? Or maybe is it the fact that their record the past 2 years (24-7-1) was only bested by Green Bay (26-6), and New England (25-7)? Please enlighten us

  17. For everyone that wants to claim Smith is only mediocre, remember, the guy had like 8 HC/OC’s in 9 years. The kid hasn’t ever been given enough room to grow into a system the way most QB’s are allowed. And yes, I realize that it was the 2nd season with Harbaugh when he got yanked for Kap, but I believe there were extenuating circumstances in that particular case, i.e., injury to Alex and Kap having a gifted set of legs with a strong work ethic.

  18. I keep forgetting about Buffalo and the Jets.

    Prob because unless it is part of a Revis or Cromartie trade the Jets likely won’t do it because of the money Alex is due to earn.

    Buffalo is likely but I think they draft a QB early.

  19. Only way I’d give up a draft pick for Alex Smith is if Jim Harbaugh came with as part of the deal.

    Why would the Chiefs want him? Reid has no familiarity with him. Chiefs already have a mediocre game manager who can have decent success if surrounding circumstances are perfect.

  20. Where were all you people the first 6 years of Alex Smith career?!

    Not giving two giggles about how bad Smith was but then Harbaugh comes along and transforms him into a real QB! Now everybody feels like the Niners owe him something and he is elite!

    Lol, are we in the twilight zone or something? I highly doubt Smith will go to another team and become the person he was when he last played in SF…. Niners are right to get as much back from him as possible seeing as they invested 8 years into a QB who only had one solid season!

  21. Yeah, you are going to keep Alex… Right…… There are a couple of dynamics that make that a bad idea.

    1) Alex makes 8 times the salary that your 2nd year stud qb makes. How long is that going to be ok with Kap.. How old is he again…

    2) There are team members wo still prefer Smith over Kap. Gore, Vernon Davis and Staley.

    3) Alex Smith wants to play.. How long before he starts voicing discontent. He didn’t this year because I’m certain he was told that it wasn’t to his benefit as it reduced the teams leverage to move him. If they don’t allow him to move and the season starts with him on the bench it will be to his benefit to complain.

    So as a team seeking his services I wouldn’t give them anything more than a 5th rounder or worse. They want to keep him from going to the Cards they will take a pack of tic-tacs and a lottery ticket to make that happen.

    I hope nobody offers anything. Would be fun to watch.

  22. I’ve been a 49er fan for 59 years. Those who say Alex Smith is average or mediocre or not good enough to produce for a crappy team don’t know squat about football. He played without complaint for horrible coaches and behind horrible lines that wouldn’t have allowed Peyton Manning enough time to be the quarterback he has been. Have you folks noticed that completion percentage goes down when you’re on your back or always on the run? Smith’s performance improved because he had a better line and he adapted to Harbaugh’s low-risk, no-mistake system. In 2011, he set a league record of just 5 picks the whole season. Last year, after he sought the services of throwing guru Tom House, his accuracy improved greatly, and his 70% completion rate would have set a new NFL record had he thrown enough passes. He had a 93% completion rate in the game before he was injured and the game during which he was injured (27-29), had 4 TD passes, and no intercepts. And, the only thing he said was that being benched after his concussion “sucked.”

    Alex Smith has more intelligence (he earned a degree in Economics from Utah in 2 years), courage and class than any quarterback I’ve ever seen. I’d be very pleased if the 49ers decided to keep him, but I don’t think that’s going to happen.

  23. deedub1639 says: “There are team members wo still prefer Smith over Kap. Gore, Vernon Davis and Staley”

    That is totally incorrect. Those guys are close friends with Alex and they want to see the 49ers treat him “right” but they all know and agree Colin Kaepernick is their best option at QB. There is a HUGE difference between supporting him and wanting him to be the starter.

  24. I’ll be back to say I told you so after Smith is released outright. No team would trade anything for a guy they can sign as a FA for half the price he would cost today.

    Reading these comments makes it obvious what a bunch of mouthbreathers NFL fans are.

  25. The Niners were just a “healthy” Justin Smith from winning the SB. If Colin was a dropback no-run passer like Alex, whose arm would you rather have back there??? The legs are just a add-on for Kaepernick. Take care Alex, now keep the confidence…

  26. They’d be smart to keep Smith. Kap runs like a sprinter, he IS going to get seriously hurt unless he starts to learn to run like a running back or a Russell Wilson. Oh, and I’m not a seattle fan, just pointing this out.

  27. So if you let Smith go is Tolzien far behind? He is more of a Smith type qb than a Kaepernick style. Or do you keep him because he is very intelligent and a hard worker?

  28. Niner fan, Alex well-wisher here,

    Just pointing out some observations here…

    When the niner’s picked Alex 1st overall, he stepped into a bad situation. He took over a horrible team with no supporting cast whatsoever, from Owners, Coaches and Players alike.

    A lose-lose situation for all the above, and for niner fans.

    However, despite the disarray – the 49ers have set up Alex Smith, financially for life. He’s had many opportunities to start, albeit with some of the worst head coaches and “talent”, but opportunities nonetheless. The multiple coaching changes and revolving door of wasted draft picks – were not only detrimental to Alex Smith, but to the organization, team and fans alike.

    QB is arguably the most important position, but i feel sorry for guys like Gore, Davis, and Willis to name a few, that have been amongst the top in their position while dwelling in the cellar with Alex. Bad timing is all, but he’s been paid very well throughout his career and had ample opportunities to start.

    When there’s an overhaul of coaching, is it so uncommon to have said coach wanting to hand pick their own guy?

    His 13 win campaign was mutually benificial. But let’s face it – once Harbaugh came into the picture, how long did you expect alex smith to last?

    He’s a biproduct of the team, for good or worse. The team doesn’t owe him any more than he owes the team. it’s a business at the end of the day – not a charity.

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