2007's Least Valuable Player on His Way Out?

Aaron LiebmanAnalyst IAugust 22, 2008

When you think of 49er quarterbacks, Pro Bowlers and Hall of Famers come to mind. After all, this is the franchise that produced John Brody, Joe Montana, Steve Young, and Jeff Garcia. With all that success it had to be fate to have a quarterback so bad that his ineptitude alone would equal the great play of the others.

Big things were expected from the 49ers last year. They had the number one running back in the conference in Frank Gore along with a menacing defense. Unfortunately, they also had Alex Smith as their quarterback. While the Super Bowl champion Giants started out 0-2, the Niners won their first two games, but hardly due to the play of their quarterback. In both games against the Cardinals and Rams they were outgained in yardage.

While the Giants found their form, the Niners did the opposite, not winning another game until November and until long after Smith was sidelined with an injury. To add insult to that injury, Niners coach Mike Nolan accused Smith of dragging the injury out longer than needed and that Smith was physically able to play. However, Smith would not play another down for the rest of the season. Nolan should feel thankful. Smith’s quitting on the team has proven that he is not and never will be the answer in San Francisco or anywhere else. The only answer he will be will be to a where are they now quiz or biggest busts of all time. Maybe he can get an apartment with Ryan Leaf?

Recently NFL Network began airing a commercial in which Smith takes some underprivileged kids out bowling.  Clearly not an actor, Smith lacks any enthusiasm or any joy from the encounter.  That explains why we don’t really see him too much in the promo.  In fact, he barely cracks a smile.  The narrator of it says “Bowling may not be his game…”  Well we know football isn’t, and acting clearly isn’t either.  Perhaps Smith should take up cricket.