San Francisco 49ers CEO Jed York said he'd like to keep Alex Smith on the roster next year, but since the 49ers are up against the salary cap, is that even realistic? Yes, but it would cost the 49ers - a lot. Alex Smith is due roughly $8 million in salary and bonuses next year, so retaining key free agent players like Dashon Goldson, Isaac Sopoaga, Randy Moss and Delanie Walker probably wouldn't be feasible.
Goldson is a two-time pro-bowler looking for big, long-term, contract that would pay roughly $8 million per year while Sopoaga, Moss, and Walker have been valuable contributers this year. To make matters more complicated, the 49ers have 14 draft picks in this year's NFL draft and would need to budget a certain dollar amount aside to sign any number of them.
So can the 49ers bring back Alex Smith as the highest paid back-up in the NFL? Sure, but it could cost them several key players along the way.