I so wanted Alex Smith to sign somewhere else and leave the 49ers in a quarterback lurch, I really and truly did. I wanted him to enjoy what so few NFL players ever experience, the joy of firing two middle fingers at the boss and going to work for a new boss.
And why? Because I know one thing that young folks learn too late that leverage is better than sex.
The proof? How many times will the average person have sex, and how many times will the average person get to tell his boss to face-pile a dungheap?
I rest my case.
But that didnt happen. Of course it didnt happen. It had zero chance of happening. The 49ers would either get Peyton manning or keep Smith, and all the other options werent options at all.
Then it hit me. Theres another reason why I wanted Alex Smith to get a better deal somewhere else.
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Because being the 49er quarterback is one of the worst jobs in America, and he deserved a break.
A break from being constantly talked about, even when he isnt even working out. A respite from the endless speculation, guesswork and free-range idiocy. A respite from finding out that no matter how well he plays, how far he takes his team, he still sucks. Hes still awful. He still isnt Aaron Rodgers.
And now he isnt Peyton Manning, either.
See? The game is rigged. He can never win. He went 13-3. He led his team to the NFC title game. He caddied for his coach. And what did that get him?
Squat on a stick. Thats what. And wheres the fun in that?
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The answer is that there isnt any. He got four free months out of seven years, all because he got taken by the wrong team at the wrong time by the wrong people. And now that hes with the right people, theyre still looking at him like hes not quite the right people.
This is a lesson Colin Kaepernick should be absorbing as fast as his fevered brain can absorb it. He may become the starter at some point, and if Comrade Maiocco is correct that day could come sooner rather than later, but he wont enjoy the experience.
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And why do we know that? Because Frankie Albert got grilled, and John Brodie got grilled and replaced about three times, and Steve DeBerg was thrown into the post-Brodie grinder, and Joe Montana started as a savior and then became the argumenttransitional figure to Steve Young, and Young became the impatient understudy and then the guy who couldnt hold Montanas jock for five years, and then Jeff Garcia became the replacement for Young who couldnt match his two predecessors, and now theres Smith.
All good to great quarterbacks with success in their resumes, and all who took regular rhetorical beatings for inadequacies both real and imagined in their home towns.
This means one thing, and one thing only. 49er fans hate their quarterbacks even when they profess to love them. This hatred comes out in so many insidious ways that Alex Smiths dilemmas are not unique in this town. And the media members, pandering single-minded hyenas they are, yap constantly on the subject no matter the time of year or situation, to the point where we hate ourselves.
Not enough to ever stop, of course. The 49er quarterback is our heroin, and at times like this our veins are collapsing like ice floes in spring.
And when I say media, I dont mean me. Im a hell of a guy. I know. I checked.
Point is, Alex Smith is trapped yet again doing a job few can do and that fewer still should want to do. The rewards are few, the punishments are constant, and the audience can never be pleased.
Frankly, this is the day when Colin Kaepernick should ask for a trade to anything, anywhere. The lesson of how bad his life will become when he gets this job will never be clearer than it is right now.