The 49ers currently have four quarterbacks on the roster, three on the 53-man and one on the practice squad. Of these four guys one is hurt, on top of being on extremely shaky ground to begin with...another came on in relief against Carolina only to look completely inept...yet another guy is a big question mark at this point...and still another has questions of his own, so far, about the playbook.
Yes, I'm talking about Alex Smith, David Carr, Troy Smith, and Nate Davis, respectively. I think it's fair to say at the very least the team could use some depth at the QB position heading into the 2011 season.
The Draft is one way to get talent though even a high first round pick might not be ready to start the opening game. Two of the QB's on the roster aren't signed beyond 2010 thus far and it's hard to imagine both (or either?) getting an extension...so who's left that inspires a ton of confidence even to open the season while a rookie develops?
What if the 49ers aren't able to get the QB they want in the draft or don't want to leave the position to a draft-day game of chance? Who then is "OUR FUTURE" (to borrow from Kory Sheets' fame a bit)?
Let's turn our eyes to free agency and take a look at the QB's who, thus far, look to be free agents in 2011. Certainly we all expect a few of the big names on this list to receive contract extensions before free agency begins, but nonetheless I'll list them anyways...after the jump.
I got the following list from Football's Future and I think it's accurate, but if you notice anyone on the list who has been extended beyond 2010 please let me know so I can edit this list. The first group are guys who are high profile and/or starters this year.
2011 Free Agent QB's
Peyton Manning, IND
Brett Favre, MIN
Donovan McNabb, WAS
Matt Moore, CAR
Kyle Orton, DEN
Michael Vick, PHI
Matt Hasselbeck, SEA
Troy Smith, BAL
Trent Edwards, BUF
JT O'Sullivan, CIN
Seneca Wallace, CLE
Shaun Hill, DET
Brodie Croyle, KC
Chad Pennington, MIA
Tyler Thigpen, MIA
Tarvaris Jackson, MIN
Jim Sorgi, NYG
Kellen Clemens, NYJ
Bruce Gradkowski, OAK
Dennis Dixon, PIT
Billy Volek, SD
Kerry Collins, TEN
Chris Simms, TEN
Rex Grossman, WAS
So who stands out to you on this list who is a real, viable option for the 49ers to sign this off-season? Obviously there's no way Manning becomes a free agent barring the inexplicable.
McNabb has looked just as bad as Alex Smith this season and the 49ers didn't pursue him this past off-season when they certainly had the chance, instead choosing to sign David Carr as the backup and roll the dice with Alex Smith as the starter.
I think it makes total sense for Philly to keep Michael Vick on the roster and continue trotting whichever guy is healthiest each week (Vick or Kevin Kolb). After all, they are the ones who gave Vick's career a second chance and have done a nice job of using him in ways that take advantage of his talent. Vick probably feels somewhat grateful for the chance Philly took on him and I think it would be in both of their best interest to re-sign him.
A few names stand out to me, but none get me all excited and giddy...it's really not a great list. Still, we're talking about a guy who would be a fall-back option if the team is not able to swing a trade for a stud QB or pull off the elusive "draft-hit" at QB.
The most intriguing name on the list is perhaps that of Tarvaris Jackson. I say that because he's young-ish, mobile, and has been sitting behind Brett Favre for the last two years as well as having some starting experience of his own. I could think of worse options from the list unless you really just want a 1-year QB for a stopgap solution.
In that case you probably go with a guy like Kerry Collins or Chad Pennington. Neither has "all the tools" anymore but they are mostly smart players and have tons of starting experience in the NFL.
So, what say you Niners Nation?? Who would you choose from the list and why?