Stephen A. Smith did the thing.
Here we are in late June, and the 49ers continue to have a media-manipulated quarterback controversy. Smith continued it Monday by saying the 49ers would have beat the Kansas City Chiefs in Super Bowl LIV if Aaron Rodgers were their QB instead of Jimmy Garoppolo.
"If Aaron Rodgers was the quarterback in the Super Bowl instead of Jimmy Garoppolo, the San Francisco 49ers are the champions right now," Smith said on ESPN's "First Take." "They're the champions right now. With those weapons, with Aaron Rodgers? They're the champions."
This came in response to Domonique Foxworth saying Rodgers and the 49ers would be a "match made in heaven."
"I know San Francisco has Jimmy Garoppolo, but that's a situation where I think Aaron Rodgers, given his history in California and the Bay Area, San Francisco could use Aaron Rodgers," Foxworth said. "He's not missing those spots, those passes that Garoppolo missed."
This isn't the first time Rodgers has been connected to the 49ers this offseason. Ever since the Green Bay Packers traded up to draft Utah State QB Jordan Love in April, many have questioned Rodgers' future. But it's unlikely to be in Santa Clara for the team that he grew up rooting for and then spurned him on his own draft now.
San Franciso smashed Rodgers, 37-20, in the NFC Championship Game and crushed him in the regular season as well. He was sacked eight times and intercepted twice in the two games. Obviously not all of that is Rodgers' fault.
Rodgers, 36, still is an elite QB. He also is an expensive one, and eight years older than Garoppolo. There's no arguing Garoppolo crumbled in the final six minutes of San Francisco's Super Bowl loss, however, he also isn't a scrub and had a heavy hand in the 49ers' successful season.
Any pipe dreams of Rodgers wearing a 49ers jersey likely are dead. Garoppolo is their quarterback now, and after an offseason of defending him, that easily can remain true for the future as well.
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