Home > NFL > Did Alex Smith earn the right to be the 49ers’ QB of the future?

Did Alex Smith earn the right to be the 49ers’ QB of the future?

First, let’s all take a moment to reflect on how truly amazing the 49ers’ 2011 season was. With their biggest moment, a 39-34 win over the Saints, putting them in the record books. San Francisco became the first playoff team in NFL postseason history to score two gaming winning TDs, one from the feet and the other the arm of Alex Smith, in the final three minutes to win.

Smith had arguably the biggest game of his career, on the biggest stage of his career, throwing for 299 yards and three touchdowns, including the game winner to Vernon Davis with nine seconds left. Pretty good numbers for a quarterback who has been labeled as nothing more then a “game manager” all season.

Even in the 49ers’ season ending lost to the Giants, Smith threw for 2 touchdowns while, more importantly, having no turnovers. While he didn’t lead the team to victory with a late comeback, he certainly didn’t cost them the game either.The 49ers’ magical 2011 run has made the fans reconsider the possibility that the number one overall pick from 2005 might not be a bust after all. The next question seems to be, did he do enough to be considered the 49ers quarterback of the future?

The 49ers signed Smith to a one year deal last off-season, mostly because of the shortened off-season due to the lockout and his familiarity with the team. The 49ers will have a tough decision to make this offseason in regards to Smith. Is he worth the multi-year, million dollar contract he will be asking for?

The question becomes can the 49ers really find anyone better then Smith at this point? Colin Kaepernick, the second round pick from Nevada, has gotten little work this season to prove he is ready for the big stage. The free agent quarterback market is very thin, with no one that stands out as a definite upgrade. The biggest wild card is Indianapolis Colts’ quarterback Peyton Manning. Rumors are running wild about Mannings future with the Colts. If he’s available, do the 49ers see him as the missing piece to their multiple championship run? With Mannings background, it’s hard to argue that he wouldn’t be an upgrade, as long as he stays healthy (which at this point seems like a pretty big IF).

In the end, Smith looks to have done enough, at least in my eyes,  to warrant another season as San Francisco’s signal caller.

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