Alex Smith has been a busy man this offseason. From working out the kinks of his throwing mechanics with legendary pitching coach Tom House to getting used to his new toys in Mario Manningham and Randy Moss, Smith has been taking complete control of his game as well as the San Francisco 49ers.
But one little grey cloud seems to still follow Smith around, the spectre of Peyton Manning almost becoming a 49er. When asked about it now, Smith is glad everything worked out the way it did. He can even have a chuckle about it.
Smith told the San Jose Mercury News' Cam Inman about how he felt about the whole Manning ordeal to which he had a very confident response to:
"It was more strange that anything. Looking back, I'd been in constant communication the entire time with Jim (Harbaugh) and Trent Baalke, even before the season ended, about a new contract and going to get things worked out....Then all of a sudden, you think you're close, free agency is approaching and the deal is about to get done, then obviously a little strange to get the Peyton Manning thing thrown in there... for me, I looked at it as, ‘This is my team.' It's more and more so than ever in my career that this is my team and this is my job. It's not something I was going to give up. I don't know if it would have ever happened, but if it meant competing with Peyton Manning, that's not something I was going to back down from. It ended up working out the way it did. I kind of laugh about it now, the way it all happened. But I'm glad to be back here and this is where I wanted to be the entire time."
I would agree that it was and is his team, and am glad to hear him take ahold of that.
For Alex, one of the most important parts of his relationship with the team is the transparency and up-front nature of both Jim Harbaugh and Trent Baalke, both of whom were to the point when it came to possibly signing Manning.
"As odd as that situation was, I guess the great thing through it all, Jim's always been up front. From last year's lockout and the entire season, this situation was no different. I was in constant communication. He was coming over to my house and we were on the phone every day. Same thing with Trent. It was a unique circumstance. Having a guy like Peyton on there on the market doesn't happen often."
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