The Alex Smith trade to the Kansas City Chiefs is not official yet because it cannot go through until the start of the new league year March 12.

So, Colin Kaepernick, who replaced Smith as the starting quarterback of the San Francisco 49ers, was delicate when addressing the matter during an appearance on NFL Network Thursday. It’s apparent the two had a solid relationship, though, over the course of two seasons as teammates.

He's been a great friend, a great mentor," Kaepernick said, according to Matt Barrows of the Sacramento Bee. "So anywhere he goes -- or if he's still with us -- he's going to be successful."

By all accounts, Smith handled his midseason demotion with class and that is what Kaepernick reiterated about the veteran who will now get a shot to start with the Chiefs.

"I think the biggest thing with Alex is he was always in my ear, making sure I was seeing the defense," Kaepernicl said. "Did I see safeties do this? Did I see the rotation? Did I see things like that? Just making sure I have mental clarity when I step on the field."

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Brad Biggs covers the Bears for the Chicago Tribune