Alex Smith said today he would "love to stay" in San Francisco beyond this season. Smith is set to become a free agent. The 27-year-old quarterback had his best season as a professional this year, thriving under the guidance of new head coach Jim Harbaugh. He completed 61.3 percent of his passes for 3,144 yards and a 17-to-5 touchdown-to-interception ratio, making a case for the league's comeback player of the year as the 49ers finished the regular season 13-3 and advanced to the NFC Championship Game.
In the wake of the 49ers' conference title game loss to the New York
Giants, Smith said he does not have a timetable in mind for making
progress on a new deal.
"Not in a crazy rush at this point as far as today, tomorrow," Smith
said. "I think we'll kind of take our time a little bit. I think I
have 'til March 13 or something, when the contract's up. But I think
sooner than later, no question, don't want it to go too long."
Asked if he wants to test the free-agent market, Smith answered: "I'm
not going to get into that.
"I mean, At this point I love it here, love what's going on, love this
team, the coaching staff, everything about it," he said. "No question,
would love to stay here."
Smith, embattled for much of his NFL career, delivered arguably his
best performance in the 49ers' divisional playoff win over the New
Orleans Saints, in which he ran for a 28-yard touchdown late in the
fourth quarter and then delivered the game-winning touchdown pass to
Vernon Davis with nine seconds remaining on the clock.
-- Matt Kawahara