By now most 49er fans are aware of the Alex Smith/Mike Nolan feud/fiasco that took place earlier this week. During this ordeal, Alex Smith stated that Nolan undermined Smith in the locker room and questioned Smith’s toughness. So for just one second, forget your personal opinions about Alex Smith. Forget that you might not be won over by his quarterback play even when he is healthy, and just look at common logic.
According to Smith’s words and the events that clearly transpired, Nolan did not have a clue about the status of one of his players — the same player he once called the “face of the franchise.” How does that happen? Yes, as Nolan points out there is a fine line between doctors and what is being reported, but I still want to know how a coach is so bad at communicating with his players that he does not realize the situation regarding someone as prominent as his starting quarterback?
Then to add to that, the stuff about undermining a player in the locker room is just childish behavior that no professional coach should exhibit. It’s one thing if you are of the Bill Parcells personality and you are very open and up front about giving players a hard time. But to make snide remarks during press conferences and then go into the locker room and aleniate or cause division there doesn’t exactly bode well for an NFL level head coach. Weren’t we criticizing a player by the initials of T.O. for doing this same thing amongst other players? It’s even worst when it’s the coach and those words of the now departed Kevan Barlow, who referred to Nolan as “Hitler,” seem to have a degree of truth to them.
More or less, this just adds to the myriad of poor decisions, questionable calls, and “brain farts” that Nolan has had in his tenure with the 49ers. After this, it’s hard to fathom that Nolan could return.