49ers looking for a quarterback?

With Alex Smith headed for shoulder surgery as soon as this week that will end his season - a season that actually came to an end a month ago - and Trent Dilfer still feelings the effects of being concussed, the 49ers are on the lookout for a veteran QB to add to their roster for insurance over the season's final weeks. Here's a look at some of the top veterans that are out there and available.

Shaun Hill, after a fine showing in his first significant NFL action last week, is in as the starter for this week's game against Cincinnati, but even he has injury issues with the index finger on his throwing hand still showing the effects of a fracture/dislocation a month ago. Drew Olson, recently added to the practice squad, is the only other healthy quarterback on the roster.

If they do bring in another quarterback to begin practicing with the team Wednesday, the 49ers would want a veteran who could step in and play on a moment's notice, which of course isn't easy for any quarterback. But here are a few of the veteran names they will be considering today:

Aaron Brooks: The former New Orleans starter is familiar with the San Francisco Bay Area, having played one doomed season with the Oakland Raiders last year. Brooks is athletic and would be able to improvise if he had to be thrown out there behind center in an emergency as soon as Saturday's game against the Bengals. Considering his track record - which isn't great, or even good, but does feature some previous success - some are wondering why he hasn't draw more interest from other quarterback-starved teams that are out there. He recently had a tryout with the Green Bay Packers, the team that originally drafted him.

Mike McMahon: The former Detroit and Philadelphia backup is another athletic type who could move around and improvise if he struggles with base plays. He recently had a tryout with the Miami Dolphins, certainly no quarterback haven.

Jay Fiedler: He hasn't thrown a pass in a game since 2005 but certainly has been around enough as a starter to know how to manage an offense.

Koy Detmer: San Francisco fans will remember the way he tore it up against the 49ers in a Monday night game in 2002 before being hurt. He was recently signed by the Minnesota Vikings but was waived after a few days, so he wouldn't come in cold.

Doug Johnson: OK, the pickings are starting to get a little more slim, but Johnson has been around and has experience with four NFL teams over seven seasons, including starting experience in Atlanta. He hasn't played in a game since 2004, though. Johnson recently had a tryout with the Jacksonville Jaguars.

Rob Johnson: Has played for four teams in a nine-year career and had a few tastes of success as a starter with Buffalo. He might have to be dusted off, however, since he hasn't thrown a NFL pass since 2003.

Shane Matthews: Could be a serviceable emergency QB, which is what the 49ers are looking for. Hasn't played in a NFL game since 2004.

Rohan Davey: Still a strong-armed prospect who could stand up in the pocket. Remember, the 49ers are just looking for a body that can throw and has NFL experience at this point. Davey qualifies on all counts.


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