49ers Blog and Q&A

News, notes and reader questions about the San Francisco 49ers

December 12, 2006
Was Alex Smith a mistake?

Question: Too this day I feel the 49ers should have drafted Braylan Edwards instead of Alex Smith. I think drafting a quarterback with the first pick is setting yourself up for failure. Do you think they blew it?

- Alex, Shingle Springs

Answer: Wow, you guys have about as much patience as George Steinbrenner (pre Joe Torre). Smith isn't even finished with his second season, which, by the way, is light years better than his first season. Steve Young threw 13 picks vs. eight TDs his second year in Tampa Bay. Troy Aikman had 18 picks and 11 TDs in year two. I'm not saying Smith (14 int. vs. 13 TD) is going to be better than those guys in the long run, but he's as good, or better, than they were at similar stages. Maybe the three-game winning streak last month created a false sense of hope among fans and raised expectations prematurely. This team is nowhere near ready for the playoffs and Smith is nowhere near ready to lead them there. But he is about where you'd expect for a second-year quarterback.

- Matt Barrows



MATTHEW BARROWS

Matt was born in Blacksburg, Va., and attended the University of Virginia. He graduated in 1995, went to Northwestern for a journalism degree a year later, and got his first job at a South Carolina daily in 1997. He joined The Bee as a Metro reporter in 1999 and started covering the 49ers in 2003. His favorite player of all time is Darrell Green.

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