Alex Smith Talks 49ers Dysfunction, Jerry Rice's Criticism, Future with Chiefs

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistSeptember 13, 2017

FOXBORO, MA - SEPTEMBER 07:  Alex Smith #11 of the Kansas City Chiefs looks to pass during the first half against the New England Patriots at Gillette Stadium on September 7, 2017 in Foxboro, Massachusetts.  (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)
Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

Between his time with the San Francisco 49ers and Kansas City Chiefs, quarterback Alex Smith has heard his share of criticism from fans and analysts about his performance. 

Now, during an appearance on In Depth with Graham Bensinger, Smith touched on the dysfunction he felt at times with the 49ers. He even noted there "definitely was a few-year period" where he felt more comfortable playing games on the road than at home. 

With the Chiefs' selection of quarterback Patrick Mahomes in the first round of the 2017 draft, Smith also acknowledged this could be his final year with the team:

49ers legend Jerry Rice was not shy about criticizing Smith during the QB's time with the franchise. While working as an analyst for ESPN during the 2011 season, Rice said he wanted to see San Francisco's coaching staff "take the diaper off this guy and let him play."

Even with the added presence of Mahomes in Kansas City, Smith admitted he's not going to be shy in speaking out with information, advice or anything else for the young quarterback. 

"If something comes up with Patrick that I see and I want to say, I'm certainly not going to bite my tongue and not say it," he said.

The No. 1 overall pick by the 49ers in 2005, Smith is aware there's added pressure with that label and admitted he hasn't always lived up to it. 

"I haven't reached my potential as a quarterback," he said. "I've shown flashes of it, but I haven't done it really at the level I know I'm capable of."

Smith's Week 1 performance against the New England Patriots in which he finished with 368 passing yards and four touchdowns in a 42-27 win is an indication he can be more than a game manager.

The key for Smith—and Kansas City's Super Bowl hopes—will be week-after-week consistency.