All signs point to Alex Smith becoming the starting quarterback for the San Francisco 49ers.
The 49ers have made it clear they’re going to sign him once free agency opens and he was the ringleader for the team’s player-run offseason workouts. Coach Jim Harbaugh already gave him a playbook. It’s essentially a done deal.
But that doesn’t mean Colin Kaepernick, the quarterback drafted in the second round from Nevada, is going to sit back and happily assume the No. 2 role. The 49ers see a ton of upside in Kaepernick and view him as a quarterback of the future even if they’ve already essentially announced that Smith, the No. 1 overall pick in 2005, will be returning for a seventh season.
“You just know when you step on the field you can have a great relationship and still compete with each other,” Kaepernick said on an NFL.com podcast. “I’m going to be going for that starting spot, and he’s going to be doing the same thing. May the best man win. When we’re on the field it’s going to be a competition, and we’re both there to win it.”
Kaepernick has the right attitude but with no offseason whatsoever – and potentially a truncated training camp – it’s going to be hard for rookies at any position to make a significant impact from the start of the season.
Follow me on Twitter: @BradBiggs
Brad Biggs covers the Bears for the Chicago Tribune