He's been kicked around a little, but Alex Smith is back in the fold.
After the 49ers' starting quarterback was briefly scorned for Jim Harbaugh's headline-grabbing speed-dating session with Peyton Manning, many wondered: What's this guy's mental state? Could be range anywhere from Gandhi to that KONY guy. Nobody knew.
Now we know.
Smith emerged Wednesday as the unquestioned leader of the 49ers, signing a three-year deal that will keep him with the team through the 2014 season. He told reporters on a conference call that he's as tight as ever with Harbaugh, and he never sweated the Peyton thing.
Chalk that up to an NFL quarterback saying all the right things, but what about that weekend junket to Florida? The one where Smith met with the Dolphins about their forever-vacant franchise quarterback slot?
"I'd never been to Miami Beach, and I thought it was a good way to go see it," Smith said, according to Comcast SportsNet Bay Area -- confirming the Dolphins have officially been used be everyone this month.