With Alex Smith, struggling teams beware
Good luck Larry Fitzgerald, Justin Blackmon, or Santonio Holmes because Alex Smith is coming to town.
San Francisco 49ers quarterback Alex Smith is going to be gone next season.
The relationship between Smith and Jim Harbaugh went from good to bad this last offseason, which saw Harbaugh try to usurp Smith with Peyton Manning. Matters only were made worse when Smith was permanently benched in the regular season after suffering a concussion in Week 10.
Teams like the Arizona Cardinals, Jacksonville Jaguars or New York Jets who decide to go with Alex Smith have to be cautious. Because Smith is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you’re going to get.
The positives are Alex Smith has proven to be a very capable system quarterback. He has proven to work well in an environment, when you surround him with talented receivers, good coaching, a good defense and a strong running game. If your team has none of those qualities, or you’re depending on Smith to be the proverbial “guy”, then he’s not your quarterback. He has a long history of crumbling under expectations, and his stats in 2012 are a little misleading, because of how few throws he actually made. Smith has never thrown for 4,000 yards in a season ever, and was not even projected to throw that much if he actually played a full season.
Smith’s playoff wins are a little misleading too. Smith had a legendary playoff game against the New Orleans Saints in the 2011 divisional round of the Playoffs, but the defense he was going up against was the Saints. The Saints have never been known for being a dominant defense. The Saints defense could have made Mark Sanchez look good that Sunday. Not to mention, that Smith could be a one hit wonder playoff quarterback. After all, he only played in the playoffs two times in his whole career.
After the misleading stats comes the health concerns. Smith coming off a concussion and concussions have shown to be potentially career killers, like with Jahvid Best. The risks of a recurring season ending concussion are a real concern. However, there is actually a historical precedent that teams seem to ignore.
Including the Super Bowl XLVII winner, over the last 47 Super Bowls, 81% of the winning quarterbacks of the Super Bowl were drafted or trade swaps at the draft like John Elway or Eli Manning. That means any team that picks up Smith, will only have a 19% chance of winning the Super Bowl if they even get there. Bottom-line, you simply can’t overestimate Alex Smith. There is a reason he lost his job to Colin Kaepernick, and investing too much money into a second best quarterback is a franchise killer.
James Cobern is a Featured Journalist for TPF and can be contacted at JCobern@ThePenaltyFlagBlog.com.