Alex Smith is now a physical away from becoming the starting quarterback for the Kansas City Chiefs, with the San Francisco 49ers officially announcing the trade of their former No. 1 overall pick on Tuesday.
Just seeing his name in same sentence as the phrase "starting quarterback" -- and with the word "former" nowhere to be seen -- must come as a relief to Smith, who lost the 49ers' top spot to Colin Kaepernick more than midway through last season despite leading the team to the NFC championship the previous year and to a 6-2-1 record before getting hurt in 2012.
But Kaepernick took the 49ers even further, just inches away from potentially beating the Baltimore Ravens in Super Bowl XLVII, so they had no need to keep Smith as an overpaid backup quarterback.
Now the 49ers suddenly do need a backup quarterback, with former No. 3 Scott Tolzien having never taken a snap in his two-year career.