The San Francisco 49ers and the Kansas City Chiefs have agreed to a trade that will send Alex Smith to Kansas City. Smith was the number one overall pick in 2005 and was considered a bust for most of his career until Coach Harbaugh arrived and revitalized Smith’s career. Alex Smith has looked better the last two seasons throwing 30 touchdowns and only 10 INTs (10 games in 2012). But has Smith played so well because he is asked to do less with a stacked team? The 49ers have stacked their roster with young wide receivers, a great running game, and quite possibly the best defense in the NFL. Alex Smith can be a tremendous game manager and can lead a good team to some wins, but doesn’t this sound like someone the Chiefs have gone after before? Didn’t Matt Cassel lead the Patriots to an 11-5 record behind a great Patriots team? How is Alex Smith any different?
08′ Cassel 11′ Smith
Comp %: 63.4 61.3
Yards: 230.8 196.5
TDs: 21 17
INTs: 11 5
Sacks: 47 44
QB Rating: 89.4 90.7
Based on stats from their two best seasons in their careers, not much. Alex Smith is a slightly better quarterback built from the same mold as Matt Cassel, low touchdown numbers and low interception numbers because they are game managers! They are told not to lose the game for their teams, if a guy isn’t wide open then they just take the sack and let their team go win the game. Both players also struggle to stay healthy for an entire season. Alex Smith has missed 48 regular season games in his career due to injury or just being benched, Matt Cassel has missed 50 games in that same time period.
Now what are the positives for Kansas City in this move? Alex Smith will improve the Chiefs locker room and he is a definite upgrade over Matt Cassel. Alex Smith will have a chance to fully showcase his talent and prove to the league that San Francisco made a mistake. A player with a chip on his shoulder is a dangerous player and he has made it loud and clear to everyone that he is not happy about being replaced because of a concussion. Dwayne Bowe and Alex Smith could form a nice combination and Dexter McCluster could be used in an Andy Reid system much like Brian Westbrook was in Philly. Andy Reid is a great quarterback coach and could possibly help Alex Smith to continue to rise and improve. Alex Smith will finally get a chance to be THE guy and won’t have to look over his shoulder constantly.
Andy Reid is a quarterback coach and the Chiefs were in desperate need for a change at qb, but they are also a team that needs to stock up on young talent for the future. Kansas City gave up their 2nd round pick in this years draft (34th pick) and an undisclosed mid round pick in 2014. This years draft is a deep draft and
not at all top heavy, so that 34th pick has a lot more value and the Chiefs could have easily gotten a nice young talent to move forward with. Kansas City was struck with bad timing to need a quarterback, the 2013 draft is one of the worst qb drafts in recent memory following one of the best qb drafts ever in 2012 (Russell Wilson, RGIII, Andrew Luck) not to mention the Peyton Manning sweepstakes. The Chiefs are trying to build some excitement around their team this offseason and are doing a pretty good job of doing so, signing a big name coach in Andy Reid and the marquee free agent quarterback this offseason. After all is said an done the Chiefs were a year late in getting a franchise quarterback and their only hope of knocking the Broncos off anytime soon is if they can grab Leon Sandcastle with the first overall pick.
Overall I think the 49ers got the better end of the deal, but given their position Kansas City really had no choice. Anytime you upgrade from Matt Cassel to Alex Smith it’s a good thing.
Written By: Kyle Newton
I am a senior at USF, producer for NBC Sports Tampa Bay, and Senior Editor for 110sportztalk.com
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