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It didn’t take long for general manager John Dorsey and head coach Andy Reid to completely revamp the quarterback position in Kansas City.
Now consider Smith is already a year into a three-year deal he signed last offseason and things look dicier: Two top 60 picks (potentially) for two years of a slightly above average quarterback. Now, the argument here isn’t that Cassel is better than Smith, because that is not true either. The problem is Smith may never be more than average given his history as a player and could end up being the piece that holds the Chiefs back. This is the quandary: Extend a slightly above average quarterback to maximize the value of the trade or lose the trade but get two solid years of quarterback play the Chiefs otherwise wouldn’t be receiving? Chiefs fans have wanted Kansas City to invest into a quarterback for a long time, and this administration appears willing to do so.
NFL player Ray Edwards of the Atlanta Falcons arrives at the 2012 ESPY Awards at Nokia Theatre L.A. In less than four months the Chiefs moved on from Matt Cassel, Brady Quinn, and Alex Tanney and replaced them with Alex Smith, Chase Daniel, and Tyler Bray.
In a lot of ways this trade is not much different from the Royals trade for James Shields except for Shields is a better player comparative to his sport and the Royals received two other players in the deal.

Trading two second round picks for Smith means that extending him beyond the 2014 season would be necessary in order to try to obtain the value they need for what they gave up.
Kansas City could draft a quarterback and start him over Smith but is it worth wrapping $10 million per season in a backup quarterback? He and Reid both have to figure out what they have in Smith as well as what the quarterback situation is going to be in next year’s draft. They’ve invested heavily into a quarterback they think can win them a playoff game for the first time in decades, signed a reasonable backup, and picked up a young promising talent to try to develop. In fact, if everything goes to plan, none of the quarterbacks from the Chiefs 2012 active roster will be with Kansas City in 2013. The Chiefs lost out on players like wide receivers Justin Hunter and Robert Woods, tight end Zach Ertz, defensive end Margus Hunt, and inside linebackers Kiko Alonso and Arthur Brown because of the trade, and will lose out on similar players next year. It is no coincidence that in his first full season under a good coach he found great success, going 13-3 with a 90.7 quarterback rating under John┬áJim Harbaugh. Yes, the 70.1 he had in nine starts last year ranked him seventh in the NFL last season, but the three below average years before would have ranked him on par with Blaine Gabbert and Ryan Fitzpatrick. Smith is a smart player who will protect the ball, be efficient in the passing game, control the line of scrimmage, and help the running game, but he is not the dynamic presence a team needs to declare him a franchise quarterback.

Remember, the Chiefs gave up at least eight combined seasons of two Arthur Brown type players for Smith. Based on Smith’s performance and what quarterbacks are available to the Chiefs should dictate the direction Dorsey goes when it comes to a potential extension. Two second round picks is an expensive price and more than what Smith was worth, but it is the price you have to pay if you’re looking to try to improve your team at the most important position.
And while Smith will be playing under a good coach in Andy Reid, the problem is Smith is rarely healthy.
This is part of the reason why the 49ers had no issue benching him for Colin Kaepernick after Smith’s concussion and why they were fine with trading him to Kansas City. Five total years of above average play from Smith could end up equaling those eight years given the importance of the quarterback position.
I’d much rather the Chiefs be aggressive in getting the quarterback they want than settling for a quarterback they are not interested in.

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