What Team Will San Francisco 49ers QB Alex Smith Be On Next Season?
The Jacksonville Jaguars have more talent on offense than their 2-9 record suggests.
If Maurice Jones-Drew comes back healthy next year, then Jacksonville’s offense has a chance to be special. Justin Blackmon and Cecil Shorts have emerged as lethal weapons on the outside and Marcedes Lewis has seemingly regained his form as well.
Since Blaine Gabbert’s injury, Chad Henne has filled in beautifully at quarterback in the past two games. He’s thrown six TD passes compared to just one interception and he’s averaging over 300 yards per contest.
This is his fifth NFL season though and there’s a reason why he was backing up Blaine Gabbert. In the two years that he had double-digit starts for the Miami Dolphins, he threw more interceptions than TD passes.
If Henne continues to put on a great show for the rest of the season then maybe he’ll take the starting job away from Gabbert, who is ranked 29th in QBR and has failed to live up to his first-round draft pick status.
However, if Henne’s hot start proves to be nothing more then Jacksonville’s front office will certainly consider trading for Smith. That way they could use their top draft picks to repair their defense, which is 28th in the league in points allowed.
With budding talent at wide receiver and a star running back who should be healthy next year, Smith would at least give the Jaguars a chance of making the playoffs.
1. Arizona Cardinals
After starting the 2012 season 4-0, the Arizona Cardinals are winless and everything has fallen apart.
Coach Ken Whisenhunt has given the reins of the team to rookie quarterback Ryan Lindley, who has looked like he’s in over his head the past two weeks. In his first game, he went 9-of-20 for just 64 yards and the next week he threw for 312 yards but threw four interceptions.
Kevin Kolb had a great run to the start of the season, leading Arizona to four victories when John Skelton was injured, but he then became injured himself and nothing has gone right for the Cardinals since.
The Cardinals could try going back to Kolb or they could wait to see if this Lindley experiment pans out, but adding Alex Smith to their roster would be the best move they could make. It would be the perfect fit for both the QB and the team.
Smith has been in the NFC West his entire career. He has experience playing against the Seahawks and Rams, and of course he knows how his own team’s defense works.
Meanwhile, the Cardinals have one of the best wide receivers to ever play the game in Larry Fitzgerald, but he is averaging just 57 yards a game and has caught only four touchdown passes through 11 games. All the quarterback has to do is throw the ball in Fitzgerald’s direction and he’ll jump over any 5’10” cornerback to get a reception, but none of Arizona’s quarterbacks have been able to take full advantage of that thus far.
Arizona’s rushing offense is 30th in the league, but Beanie Wells, Ryan Williams and LaRod Stephens-Howling have all been dealing with injuries, so you’d have to expect more production from them next year. Meanwhile, the Cardinals defense is seventh in the league in yards given up per game and would probably be doing even better in that category if the offense could move the ball effectively and give them more time to rest.
With a healthy set of running backs, a defense that has the potential to be great and one of the best wide receivers in the game, all Arizona needs to compete for a playoff spot is a quarterback who won’t lose the game for them and can make clutch plays when necessary.
That is exactly what Alex Smith has been doing the past season-and-a-half.
It’d be beneficial for both Alex Smith and the San Francisco 49ers to part ways at the end of this year. As for where he’ll end up, the front offices who aren’t satisfied with their current QB1 and don’t end up drafting a highly rated QB in April will be the ones offering the 49ers the best deals.
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