The Best Seat In The House For All Your News On The 5 Time World Champion Niners

The Best Seat In The House For All Your News On The 5 Time World Champion Niners
A review and commentary on the history & lastest events surrounding the 17 time NFC Western Division & 5 -Time World Champion San Francisco 49ers. From 1946 and the All America Football Conference to 2009 and the road to a 6th Super Bowl title - For true fans of the scarlet and gold! Enjoy!

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Alex Smith - The Next Peyton Manning or The Next Tim Couch

Entering his third NFL campaign, 49ers quarterback Alex Smith has heavy expectations weighing on his shoulders, and building by the day. After a less than stellar rookie season following his first overall selection in the 2005 NFL Draft, Smith had a greatly improved sophmore season and helped re-enforce some of the praise given to him prior to joining the pro ranks.

Drafted 1st overall in an especially weak QB draft where only Cal's Aaron Rodgers rated a 1st round selection, (24th overall by Green Bay), Smith seemed to be largely a consolation prize to San Francisco. Most insiders expected USC signal caller and Heisman Trophy Winner Matt Leinart to be headed to the bay area. However Leinart deceided in favor of returning for his senior season in hopes of leading the Trojans to an unprecedented 3rd national championship.

Appearing in only 9 games as a rookie with a paltry QB rating, Smith appeared too often to be imitating a "deer caught in the headlights" when faced with opposition pass-rushers and an overmatched Niner O-line. However, aided greatly by the emergence of fellow 2005 pick HB Frank Gore (Miami,FL) and a revamped offensive line anchored by G Larry Allen, Smith showed drastic improvement in 2006, both statistically and in his confidence and leadership levels.

The other 2006 addition that greatly aided Smith was the addition of offensive guru and former Cowboys Coordinator Norv Turner, who was instrumental in the early developement of Hall-of-Famer Troy Aikman. Now, however with Turner's departure to be the Head Coach of the San Diego Chargers, Smith will turn to former QB'S coach turned O.C. Jim Hostler to help maintain the template that Turner started and avoid having Smith learn his third new system in as many years.

With the additions both in free-agency and in the 2007 draft, the 49ers seem poised to challenge for the playoffs for the first time in 5 years. Hopefully with the potential emergence of 2006 1st rounder TE Vernon Davis and new additions Darrell Jackson (Seattle), Ashlie Lelie (Atlanta), and Jason Hill ( draft rnd 3, Washington St.) , Smith will be able to properly compliment in the air, the pro-bowl franchise record year on the ground for Gore.

As many NFL expects are prognosticating big things for Alex Smith this year, lets take a comparison look at Alex Smith's first two NFL seasons, and that of fellow 1st overall QBs of the past, such as stand-outs Peyton Manning and Troy Aikman, the middle ground in Vinny Testevarde and the bust in Tim Couch.

Alex Smith - 1st Overall, 2005

2005 9 gms 84 comp /165 att , 50.9 pct. ,875 yds , 5.3 ypa, 1 td 11 int
2006 16 gm 257 comp/ 442 att , 58.1 pct., 2890 yds , 6.5 ypa, 16 td 16 int

Peyton Manning - 1st Overall, 1998

1998 16 gm 326 comp/ 575 att , 56.7 pct., 3739 yds , 6.5 ypa, 26 td 28 int
1999 16 gm 331 comp/ 533 att, 62.1 pct., 4135 yds, 7.8 ypa, 26 td 15 int

Troy Aikman - 1st Overall, 1989

1989 11 gms 155 comp/ 293 att, 52.9 pct., 1749 yds, 6.0 ypa, 9 td 18 int
1990 15 gms 226 comp/ 399 att, 56.6 pct., 2579 yds, 6.5 ypa, 11 td 18 int

Vinny Testaverde - 1st Overall, 1987

1987 6 gms 71 comp/ 165 att, 43.0 pct., 1081 yds, 6.6 ypa, 5 td 6 int
1988 15 gms 222 comp/ 466 att, 47.6 pct., 3240 yds, 7.0 ypa, 13 td 35 int

Tim Couch - 1st Overall, 1999

1999 15 gms 223 comp/ 399 att, 55.9 pct., 2447 yds, 6.1 ypa, 15 td 13 int
2000 7 gms 137 comp/ 215 att, 63.7 pct., 1483 yds, 6.9 ypa, 7 td 9 int

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