CBS reporter Jason La Canfora tweeted that the 49ers have all but completed a deal that will trade QB Alex Smith. The deal cannot be announced or finalized until when the new season begins on March 12. In his contract, Smith has two years remaining with a cap hit of $9.75 million in 2013. Jim Harbaugh said on Friday that the two scenarios are to trade or even keep Alex Smith for next season. He said it would be unlikely that they release him. Assuming this is true, here are some possibilities on where Alex Smith could be playing next season:
Cleveland Browns: Smith's former offensive coordinator Norv Turner has the same job in Cleveland. Before 2011, his best season was in 2006 under Turner as the offensive coordinator with 2,890 passing yards to go with 16 touchdowns and 16 interceptions. With the consistent change of offensive philosophy over the years, Smith thrived and showed the most promise initially under Turner. The Browns have undergone a coaching change and are unsure if they will invest in 2012 first round pick Brandon Weeden to be their quarterback. This is unlikely to happen with the Browns recently saying they are not the team.
New York Jets: With the struggles of Mark Sanchez in 2012 and Tim Tebow being ineffective, the Jets need a quarterback. Smith would be the team's best and most experience quarterback if he was traded to New York.
Kansas City Chiefs: Like the Browns, the Chiefs are starting over with a new general manager and coaching staff. Matt Cassel was injured throughout last season and Brady Quinn had a poor performance in his place during the 2012 season. This is the most logical destination for Smith because he instantly becomes their quarterback if traded. If the Chiefs do not trade for Smith, they would address their need at quarterback in the 2013 NFL draft. Andy Reid's west coast style of offense would fit perfectly with Smith because of his mobility and high accuracy. This could happen if the Chiefs want a short term fix.
Jacksonville Jaguars: Blaine Gabbert had a rough season after being injured with the Jaguars and Chad Henne was far from impressive as the backup. If Smith came to Jacksonville, he would be the best quarterback for them with the playing time and experience he has in the NFL. This is also unlikely because Jaguars general manager Dave Caldwell openly said they are not the team going for Smith.