Originally posted on The Sports Rocker  |  Last updated 3/21/12
The 49ers toyed with Peyton Manning like a dog discovering a lost squeaky toy that had just a little bit of squeak left. Sure, Alex Smith just put them a few plays short of the Super Bowl, but here was Peyton Manning for the taking. So what if he might not be able to finish the season or play at all? But then, Manning signs with the Broncos.


Now, the 49ers are left scrambling to get Alex Smith back on board before he signs somewhere else. A few weeks ago, I previewed some of the teams that would be calling Mr. Manning. The Niners were on the list, but I didn't think they would be interested. I always thought they would be better off keeping Alex Smith.

Unfortunately, their little dalliance with Peyton has come at a price. Yes, Smith will more than likely re-sign with the Niners. I'm not going to say he'd be stupid not to, but he'd be stupid not to. He's never had two consecutive seasons where he ran the same offense. Finally, he'll get that chance going into the 2012 season.

The only other threat the 49ers have in the NFC West is the Seahawks. And that's if Matt Flynn is as good as advertised. The Cardinals could rebound if Kolb can play up to his contract, and stay healthy. The Rams are starting over, again. If you're Sam Bradford, you're playing for your next contract in another city.

If you're Alex Smith, and you're at the negotiating table with the 49ers brass, you're asking for a whole lot more than you know you'll get. Just to see if they blink.
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