It is easy to see the common denominator in the Kansas City Chiefs’ decision to acquire receiver A.J Jenkins: Alex Smith.
Smith was the starting quarterback in San Francisco last year when the 49ers drafted Jenkins in the first round. Smith is now the starting quarterback in Kansas City. He is throwing balls to Jenkins once again. The Chiefs acquired Jenkins for receiver Jon Baldwin, the team’s first-round pick in 2011, on Monday.
While the deal wasn’t Smith’s decision, the Chiefs brass did consult with Smith about Jenkins.
“We talked to Alex,” Kansas City coach Andy Reid said Tuesday. “Alex was very positive about it.”
Smith talked glowingly about Jenkins when he spoke to reporters Tuesday. Jenkins did not have a catch as a rookie and he was struggling in camp this year.
“I thought A.J. did a great job when he came in,” Smith said. “He was a great kid, came in hungry. It was a different situation there last year when he came in. That’s a veteran team with a lot of pieces in place. So it wasn’t his job from the jump. He came in and had to battle for it. I could say, 'I think it was a deeper roster there.' For whatever reason, it didn’t work out. He’s got a ton of talent, a lot of speed, so I think the change is doing some good.”
Jenkins will be given a chance to be a contributor right away. The Chiefs have a need for a fast, outside presence.
“We needed extra kick in there,” Reid said. ’We’ll see if AJ can give us a little extra speed.”
Clearly, Smith believes he can.