The Niners facing the dreaded QB controversy….to Kap or not to Kap?

The San Francisco 49ers success over the last few seasons has been promising. Led mostly by their stingy defense, which have been top 4 in points/game for 3 out of the last 4 seasons, along with a relentless running game. What would most people say has been the reason for their success? Was it Alex Smith’s ability that led them to 19 wins over the last 2 seasons? Using his conservative style, and dire “whatever u do don’t turn the ball over” mentality.

Quirky Head Coach Jim Harbaugh seemed a bit unsure about the future of his QB situation. He understands the game extremely well. And knows there are a scrupulous set of standards most have for QBs of a team. Him saying he expected go with the “hot hand” was fascinating.

People tend to forget that Peyton Manning was brought in, in the off season, and Alex Smith went to Miami for some discussions, getting the feeling it wasn’t receptive for him there in San Fran anymore. to me, it certainly showed that Smith is not inevitably “their man”, but more of”we’ll make it work with this guy” after Manning decided on Denver.

We all know what Alex brings to the field. A career unreliable passer, and a limited ability to throw deep. In his 7 years with SF, he has only thrown 81 TDs and 63 ints. We really don’t know what Colin Kaepernick brings completely. We did see a flicker of a possible special QB vs the Bears.

What was done in the game was marvelous. The Bears defense is outstanding, if this was done vs New Orleans or Washington then I’d say stick with Alex, not a lot to confirm vs teams with coverage like theirs.

But, it wasn’t, he made the Bears defense look like they didn’t belong on the field. Colin shredded them all over, throwing a striking deep ball. Giving them great mobility, and showing poise in pocket. Best part, he got everyone involved in the offense. Something Smith hasn’t done. Vernon Davis had 6 catches, on 8 targets, where he only had 7 targets over the last 3 games.

Colin Kaepernick’s ceiling for success is higher than Smith’s, going by the body of work that we know of Smith. And Colin didn’t even really use his legs. Scary when you recognize that he can do that as well, and bolt down the field.

Alex Smith is who we know him to be. He is an okay QB, with not a lot of potential to be a top ended QB. He will have a nice QB rating, because he is cautious with his plays, and doesn’t turn the ball over, which is of course a great benefit, and he also showed a great deal of heart last year in the playoffs. Personally, I think QB controversy is terrible for a team. It can divide a locker room, into sides. Though I think most are siding with Kaepernick at the present.

Overall, if Colin Kaepernick is playing better, and he showed that he can play, give him a chance. Let Smith get to earn the right to stay the starter for his team. Kicking him aside quickly, where he, in fact did help get them to the NFC championship, would be erroneous. Let Colin sit and learn even more, but I wouldn’t wait excessively long.

I expect Smith to be on a short leash. The fans want a QB to feel confident in and Colin Kaepernick brought that. More than I think nearly everyone has in Smith. If the offense is stagnant and inactive, put in Kaepernick, see where it goes, if then, it keeps moving along, the decision is made. Either way, I think Alex Smith knows his time in San Francisco is running short.

Written by Tony Karpinski of

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