On Thursday, 49ers quarterback Alex Smith made some noise when he said that passing yards are a "totally overblown stat." He's correct to a degree (although I personally don't believe he's as correct as my colleague Clark Judge does) but what really stood out from his potent quotables was the decision to invoke Cam Newton's name along with the stat.
Smith pointed out that Newton had a bunch of 300-yard passing games but was "not winning." Panthers linebacker Jon Beason took umbrage to that statement and fired off a Twitter zinger of his own in Smith's direction on Thursday night.
First: Buuuuuurn. Second, Beason is also correct. If winning games was the only thing that mattered, the 49ers wouldn't have had secret flirtations with Peyton Manning in the offseason. (San Francisco said they weren't in on Manning, then promptly chased him to Raleigh; not enough is made of that.)
Alex smith, don't hate on Cam Bc your stats would've gotten u cut if Peyton decided to come 2 San Fran.Truth b told..That's after a 13-3 yr.— Jon Beason (@jonbeason) May 25, 2012
San Francisco won 13 games in 2011 and cruised to a division title in the NFC West. They were incredibly close to making the Super Bowl. They did all this with Alex Smith as their quarterback.
And yet, they felt compelled this offseason to attempt and upgrade the position by chasing after a 36-year-old coming off of four neck surgeries. Remember at one point Smith was making a trip to Miami to look into signing with the Dolphins?
And Beason's right. Smith, for all his talk of how important wins are, might be elsewhere if Peyton picked the 49ers. Newton, on the other hand, would be in Carolina no matter how many games the Panthers lost last year.