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Peyton Manning Charade: 49ers Look to Bounce Back

SAN FRANCISCO, CA - JANUARY 14:  Head coach Jim Harbaugh of the San Francisco 49ers talks with quarterback Alex Smith #11 in the third quarter against the New Orleans Saints during the NFC Divisional playoff game at Candlestick Park on January 14, 2012 in San Francisco, California.  (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)
Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images
Dylan DeSimoneCorrespondent IMarch 19, 2012

Before the 49ers officially lost out on the Peyton Manning sweepstakes, the 49ers quarterback of 2011 began seeking other potential suitors.

Alex Smith flew to Miami to meet with the Dolphins, where talks reportedly lasted over five hours. Smith continued today with agent Tom Condon handy, but according to sources, left without a deal in place.

San Francisco could very well re-sign Smith to the three-year deal that is on the table—that is, if the eight-year veteran can swallow his pride and bury it deep down.

Smith feels slighted after Jim Harbaugh and Trent Baalke decided to wait on Manning to come to a decision.

However, Smith needs to come to the realization that an opportunity like that comes maybe once in a lifetime, and when you've performed badly or not at all for seven out of eight seasons, a future first ballot Hall of Famer may be in line for your job.

In the end, I think Smith will re-sign because it's widely known that it's his best chance to build on his new found success from last season.

But the 49ers need to fix problems elsewhere as well, and that is perhaps why it was best that Manning did not pick San Francisco.

Call it a blessing in disguise, but the Niners have only a certain amount of cap space to sign a legitimate quarterback, a solid right guard (or two), and an entire draft class.

According to sources, the 49ers held an impromptu pro day for street free agents, which showed San Francisco was back to business as usual.

They will evaluate talent, place value and attain if possible—it's how they do business.

Former Carolina Panthers offensive lineman Geoff Schwartz is a California native and longtime 49ers fan. After taking a few visits, Schwartz will be in the bay area to take a meeting with the Niners, and it's pretty unanimous that the Faithful want him to sign, and I believe he will.

San Francisco will probably add a few more under the radar guys from their pro day, and then it's on to the draft.

I fully expect Harbaugh and Baalke to repeat with another stellar draft class. They've proven that they can evaluate talent and the 2012 draft class is littered with it.

The 49ers can do a few different things, but the needs are still at wide receiver and offensive line. After all this, San Francisco will begin their training camp with an immense amount of talent and competition at every position, which in turn will give them great depth during the season.

The San Francisco 49ers will be back next season and likely better than last year, with a full offseason and a new crop of talented players.

Follow me on Twitter: @DeSimone80

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