The San Francisco 49ers have agreed to a trade that would ship out Alex Smith, according to Jason La Canfora. Where Smith is being traded remains unclear, but the team has apparently told others that the deal for the quarterback has been agreed to and will be completed when the league year begins on March 12.
The 49ers have expressed to others that a deal for QB Alex Smith is effectively complete. Can't be finalized til league year begins 3/12— Jason La Canfora (@JasonLaCanfora) February 24, 2013
so it's not official, both clubs view it at as it's effectively done. I do not know the other team. KC and JAX are 2 teams that make sense— Jason La Canfora (@JasonLaCanfora) February 24, 2013
Both the Kansas City Chiefs and Jacksonville Jaguars are looking for quarterbacks and have been feeling around to see who may be available. In the Chiefs' case, they would like anyone who can unseat the disappointing Matt Cassel. The Jaguars would like someone to at least compete with Blaine Gabbert, if not take the spot from their former first-round pick.
The Chiefs and Jaguars own the top two picks in the NFL Draft, but there aren't any highly rated quarterbacks that make sense to select at those positions. Both teams could, and probably will, select a quarterback in the later rounds, but they also need to bring in someone who will be ready to play sooner than a late-round draft pick.
Update: Jaguars general manager Dave Caldwell has said Smith is not being traded to Jacksonville.
Smith was the No. 1 pick in the 2005 NFL Draft and suffered through five terrible seasons before breaking out in 2011 under head coach Jim Harbaugh. He completed 61.3% of his passes and threw 17 touchdowns to just five interceptions that season, leading the 49ers to the NFC Championship Game. He returned in 2012 as the team's starter.
But Smith's 49ers career essentially ended in Week 10. He suffered a concussion, forcing Colin Kaepernick into action. The rookie was fantastic, taking over the starting job and leading San Francisco to the Super Bowl. With the young Kaepernick in the fold, the 49ers no longer need Smith and have been shopping him for a month. Apparently they now have found their suitor for the quarterback, and a deal.