Leading up to the draft, it seems as though every other day some type of new mock draft gets posted on this site. How many times do we need to see the same possible players analyzed? Is it Peterson, Gabbert, Miller, Quinn, Prince...and so on. Who's the player the 49ers absolutely need this year?
Well, allow me to elaborate on the one player that the 49ers definitely do not need for the 2011 season.
You've guessed it: Nate Clements.
Just joking. Actually, I'd love to seem him go too, but the guy I'm talking about is the not-so-talented Mr. Smith.
With the shortened off-season, perceived "lack of talent" in this year's QB class, and the arrival of the 49er's QB guru, Smith apologists...I mean, uh, fans are clamoring for just one more year for him to wear the 49ers Jersey.
Funny: after the 49ers' 0-5 start and another missed post season, you'd think there was no way that Smith would be back.
Of course, most people will caveat their argument for Smith's return with the standard, "Well, yeah, I think he sucks, but we don't have a better option right now." My cynical nature tends to read between the lines and interprets that as another lame excuse to bring Smith back; all under the veil of the "we have no better option" line.
A couple of weeks ago, news came out about Jim Harbaugh playing catch with Smith and planting seeds of hope of an Alex Smith return with the 49ers. We haven't heard a lot of news on the subject since, but those reports were enough to get the Smith controversy going again.
Still, I think the likelihood of Smith returning is slim. And although Harbaugh has publicly praised Smith, he hasn't quite said anything that would shock people if he, in fact, decided to part ways with the perennial losing QB.
Here are some factors that the transparent "but he's probably our best option" argument do not take into account when seeing if Smith will return to the 49ers.