Smith vs. Johnson vs. Kaepernick
By: Brian Sanchez
|HC Jim Harbaugh (left) and GM Trent Baalke (right)|
will have to make a decision together about the QB position
Ladies and Gentlemen, there is officially a QB competition in San Francisco. Yes, the 49ers did just sign QB Alex Smith to a 3 year $24 million contract. So what? This is Harbaugh's team, not Smiths'. First SF kept Smith on a yo-yo while they tried to court Peyton Manning (who absurdly picked Denver). In that time Smith went to Miami to visit the Dolphins and try and apply pressure to the 49ers to sign him and for more money. Fail. The Dolphins decided to sign David Garrard who hasn't thrown a pass in an NFL game in nearly two years. Then when Manning chose the Broncos Smith had to come crawling back to the 49ers and sign a 3 year deal for only $8 mil a year. That is basically nothing for a starting QB and an insult to Smith as far as saying they do not believe he is "elite" like they mentioned last year because they are paying him like an average QB. Jim Harbaugh has made it very clear that Smith is the starter going into the season. But if Smith struggles and Johnson shines in training camp and preseason play you'd better believe Harbaugh will make the switch. It appears that now the real battle will be between Kaepernick and Johnson to be the No. 2 QB and be ready to supplant Smith if he drops from being a decent QB back to being a terrible one.
Let's take a look at the 3 Quarterbacks:
(6"4' 217 lbs. 1st round No. 1 overall pick in 2005 out of Utah)
|2011 starter and projected 2012 starter Alex Smith|
(6"3' 205 lbs. 5th round pick in 2008 out of University of San Diego via Oakland Tech in Oakland, California)
|Harbaugh (left) and Johnson (right) are very familiar|
with each other after spending 3 years together at USD
(6"4' 230 lbs. 2nd round (4th) in 2011 out of Nevada)
|Kaepernick (above) is regarded by many coaches and fans|
as the future QB of the 49ers
that way Smith would be easily cuttable if it became time for Kaepernick (or Josh Johnson) to take over. The 49ers traded up to the top of the 2nd round to make sure the got their hands on this kid. Colin is a big, athletic, fast, and very smart QB with a rocket arm. He did come from a spread system in college. It is believed that he is just not ready to pick up NFL schemes and blitz packages yet. When he finally does play he will open up the playbook for Harbaugh because of his arm strength and ability to make any throw on the field.
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