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!

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Alex Smith Anxious To Get To Work

Heading into this season, there is a great deal of pressure on 3rd year quarterback Alex Smith (left) to deliver on the promise he showed last year and as the first overall pick in the 2005 NFL Draft. In order to do that, he will need a lot of help, first from the solid ground game of Frank Gore, but more urgently, from the improved air attack bolstered by some new faces. However, early in this off-season's OTA's, Smith hasn't had much chance to work with those faces.

Absent from the field were his three primary receiving targets. Wideout Darrell Jackson will not participate with the team until training camp as he continues to recover from an injured toe that has plagued him since last season. Receivers Ashley Lelie (quad) and Arnaz Battle (hamstring) missed the last few days of OTAs for precautionary reasons. Despite the absence of his main receivers, Smith was on target and established a good rhythm with the players at his disposal. He was particularly impressed with Bryan Gilmore and Taylor Jacobs, completing a 30-yard pass to each of them. Although establishing a connection with his backup receivers is a good thing, Smith understands the importance of developing a solid rapport with his primary targets.

In his first two seasons as the 49ers' signal-caller, Smith has yet to find a receiver whom he can depend on regularly. In 2005 and 06, Smith hasn't had a single receiver gain more than 733 yards, a number that former 49ers Brandon Lloyd (2005) and Antonio Bryant (2006) accumulated.
The most obvious choice from this year's group is the veteran Jackson, but that is contingent on him getting and staying healthy. He had three 1,000-yard seasons during his stint with the Seattle Seahawks and provides Smith with his most proven wideout to date. As a former first-round pick in 2002, Lelie is widely viewed as an underachiever. He had only one 1,000-yard season with the Denver Broncos in 2004, but his production has dropped each year since. He has an opportunity to turn his career around with the 49ers. He'll offer Smith a legitimate deep threat.

Battle has increased his production every year. In 2006, he achieved career highs in receptions (59) and receiving yards (686), and he should continue to be a solid option for Smith. When Smith has the opportunity to work with these three players, San Francisco's offense should become much more efficient. One thing's for sure: Smith is looking forward to having these guys back on the field.

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