I guess somebody had to play quarterback for the 49ers. It may as well be Alex Smith.
Unfortunately, much like the rest of this season, there are so many questions surrounding coach Mike Singletary’s decision it’s hard to figure out where to start.
Why is Alex Smith preferable to Troy Smith this afternoon against the Seattle Seahawks? And not last week against the Packers?
“He has an opportunity right now to step in, and up the tempo of our offense, utilize some of the protection calls, utilize some of the things that can very easily get us out of tough situations,” Singletary said earlier this week.
Experience now? Leadership then?
Did anybody else know that Troy Smith was one 10-for-25 effort — in the cold, in the wind, against the Packers — away from losing his job as the 49ers’ starting quarterback? I thought he had that intangible leadership quality this team needed to win.
And where’s David Carr in all this? What does it take for him to play at this point? A pair of stretchers?
I want to wish Alex Smith the best of luck against the Seahawks even though it won’t make a lick of difference to the Niner nation, which has written him off into free agency with a Sharpie. Alex could outplay Tom Brady, Peyton Manning and Philip Rivers and not regain the faith of the 49ers Faithful.
What Singletary seems to be saying is that Chapter 3 in the 49ers’ playbook would have made the difference against the Packers. Forget leading the other 10 players in the huddle — which apparently Alex Smith doesn’t do to Singletary’s liking — these plays that he knows and Troy Smith doesn’t know will make the difference today against the Seahawks.
It’s been that kind of year for the Niners nation. First, it was the play-calling of offensive coordinator Jimmy Raye. Then it was the leadership of Alex Smith. Now it apparently is the fact that Troy Smith doesn’t know enough of what’s going on past Page 54 in the 49ers’ playbook.
What will it be next week?
I don’t think there’s a city in the world that has enjoyed a World Series championship more than San Francisco has the Giants’ 2010 triumph. The past 10 weeks of Giants baseball should be put in a time capsule for all future city dwellers to re-live time and time again.
But let’s not get cocky here. Reaching the playoffs was a 162-game effort that came down to the last day, and losing Juan Uribe and Edgar Renteria are dents in the armor of these oh-so-wonderful champions.
Repeating is going to be tougher than any of us imagine.
Tim Liotta is a freelance journalist and regular contributor to The Examiner. E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.