NFL, Alex Smith

The Alex Smith Solution

11/9/09 in NFL   |   FirstTierSports   |   36 respect

Former overall number one pick for the 49ers Alex Smith has had a very rocky career so far, but I don't think it's on him. Smith came out of the University of Utah after leading them to an undefeated season under Urban Meyer. He impressed in the combine by running a fast 40 time, showing off his arm and scoring extremely high on the Wonderlic test.

Smith has shown that he has the smarts and athletic ability to succeed at the NFL level. So why hasn't he yet? The answer is the 49ers have mismanaged him badly.

In his five years with the Niners Smith has had five different offensive coordinators (next year will probably be six) and two head coaches, including one that never believed in him (Nolan) and one that benched him after being named head coach (Singletary).

Most number one overall picks have had a rough start. If your team has the number one pick it means that they had the worst record in the league, which means their team is terrible.

If the 49ers want Smith to succeed they need to put him on the Peyton plan. Peyton has had the same offensive coordinator, offensive line coach and quarterback coach since he entered the league 11 years ago. Peyton also had a terrible rookie season going 1-15 but in no way was his job ever in jeopardy.

The Colts showed patience and stability with Peyton Manning and now they have the best Quarterback in the history of the NFL leading their team. The 49ers have showed instability and a lack of confidence in Alex Smith and they are sitting on one of the biggest busts in NFL history.
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11/10/09   |   Beaneaters   |   17821 respect

LOL!  Me Too and I'm a Cowboys fan!  LMAO

Sorry Vinnie, out of thumbs but I owe you. Your Cowboys are looking good...

11/10/09   |   Beaneaters   |   17821 respect

I'd be willing to hold a Niners' clipboard for a lot less money.

11/9/09   |   BluDevil   |   618 respect

I disagree with this article to a point. Yes, Alex has had a lot of coaches. That is because his performance led to a lot of coaches getting dumped (with Turner being the exception). If he played better, he'd have had longer tenures with his coaches. The NFL is a win now league, for better or worse. So Alex can't cry about his poor luck and that he'd be better if he had more consistent coaching. As you point out, he tested over the top in his wonderlick test so he should have the mental ability to learn any offensive system pretty quickly. The problem is his performance on the field.

And to compare him to Manning, you also have to look at Manning's numbers in his 1st and 2nd year. Sure, the colts didn't win much but Manning had almost 4,000 yards passing, 26 TDs and 28 INTs. So even though he didn't win a lot he did show that he had the talent to make big plays and to play QB in the NFL. Then in his 2nd year Manning had 4,000 yards, 26 TDs and went to the pro bowl. That kind of performance is what keeps coaches in jobs.

Contrast that to Smith. His rookie year he had 1 TD and it took him 149 pass attempts to get that 1 TD. He also had 11 picks. Then in his 2nd year he had 16 TDs, 16 INTs and 2,800ish yards. In 2 years Smith didn't show what Manning had showed in one year. Smith's performance didn't warrant keeping those coaches around. So I think it is just as much his "fault", if you will, that he's had so many different coaches.

11/9/09   |   BluDevil   |   618 respect

Eric_ wrote:
Well, obviously they aren't, because Shaun Hill started the first seven games.

Hill started the first 6, I think. Hill was yanked a halftime of the niners/texans game. Smith then started the next two games against indy and the titans. So on the year Hill won 3 games while Alex has won none. And when the pressure was on at the end of the texans game, indy game and titans game Alex killed the team by turning the ball over. He didn't throw those picks because he was getting rushed too much. The o-line gave him time and in all those cases he just overthrew his receiver.

11/9/09   |   Eric_   |   7716 respect

mk_donley wrote:
I feel horribly for Alex! The 9ers are 3-5 this year, and the 5 losses are not his fault. The O-Line has to do a better job of protecting him.

Well, obviously they aren't, because Shaun Hill started the first seven games.

11/9/09   |   RaiderNation357   |   5 respect

Can we say the next Ryan Leaf...awesome college player...NFL Bust

11/9/09   |   zballa07   |   44 respect

from what ive seen im impressed he's doing good with a crappy team so far alot of the interceptions he threw were tipped by his own players. he's young and hasn't hit his groove yet what he needs is a veteran to show him the ropes

11/9/09   |   dwyermaker   |   39 respect

At the same time, Smith definitely deserves some of the blame for the Niners' lack of success.  The guy just does not inspire confidence (not to mention he's now lost 7 straight starts...)  Peyton was never questioned even when he went 1-15 because it was clear he never questioned himself.  Smith is another story.

And I think everyone now realizes that SF made a huge mistake when they didn't take Aaron Rodgers in that draft,  a NorCal native who dominated the Pac-10 at Cal about 10 miles from Candlestick.  When in doubt, you have to take the hometown guy or risk this type of backlash...

11/9/09   |   TheRoss   |   356 respect

I agree with a lot of this. A lot of the QBs that have washed out in the NFL, aren't completely to blame, and are the victim of extremely poorly run organizations, and coaching changes every season. How can you develop consistency, if you never have it around you?

11/9/09   |   mk_donley   |   2554 respect

I feel horribly for Alex! The 9ers are 3-5 this year, and the 5 losses are not his fault. The O-Line has to do a better job of protecting him.