Alex Smith addressed the current contract negotiations with the 49ers by mentioning that he’s optomistic about his chances of returning to the team.
“It’s just a process,” Smith said, via Sacramento Bee. “It takes some time. It will get done.”
Matt Maiocco of the CSN Bay Area reports that the 49ers are “reticent” to meet QB Alex Smith‘s contract requirements because they would like to “keep the door open” for Colin Kaepernick to be their starting quarterback at some point in the near future.
Maiocco specifically mentions that Mark Sanchez‘s recent three-year, $40.5 million extension that will pay him a total of $58.25 million and includes $20.5 million in guarantees, will only complicate negotiations between the 49ers and Smith further.
Before the Jets chose to make it up to Sanchez for pursuing a replacement, Smith was said to be looking for a similar deal to the one that the Bills handed out to Ryan Fitzpatrick last season. San Francisco is still reluctant to match that contract because they feel that Fitzpatrick wouldn’t have received a comparable offer on the open market.
Smith will be a free agent in a matter days and despite Jim Harbaugh unyielding support for Smith as his starting quarterback, there’s a good chance that the team may explore alternative options. Yesterday we posted that Buccaneers QB Josh Johnson could be someone to watch out for.