You know the story by now: Rodgers backed up Brett Favre for three seasons before taking over and leading to the Packers to the Super Bowl XLV title (he was also Super Bowl MVP), while Smith toiled in medicority for six years and was on his way out of town following the 2010 season.
But that all changed when Jim Harbaugh became the 49ers' head coach. Smith re-signed with the 49ers and resurrected his career under Harbaugh's tutelage.
Although Rodgers tossed 45 touchdowns en route to being named the NFL MVP in 2011, the Packers lost to the New York Giants in the divisional round of the playoffs, while the Smith-led 49ers advanced to the NFC title game.
Then, in Week 1 earlier this season, Smith outplayed Rodgers in the 49ers' 30-22 victory at Lambeau Field.
The success continued into Week 2, and 3, and 4, and so on, until a fateful concussion against the Rams in Week 10 knocked Smith from the game, and ultimately cost him his job.
On Tuesday, a day after Colin Kaepernick threw four touchdowns in the 49ers' upset victory over the Patriots in New England, Rodgers spoke with the NFL Network's Andrew Siciliano regarding Alex Smith's situation in San Francisco.
"Alex and I are buddies, we both got drafted in 2005 NFL Draft, and he's been through a lot," Rodgers said in the interview. "I can't imagine to have to go through that many offensive coordinators and the turnover in coaches has been tough for him.
"He comes in, he's 70 percent completion, he's 100-plus quarterback rating last year, he's like barely over one percent interception percentage. He's a great quarterback, he just needs to go somewhere he gets appreciated for the skills he has and hopefully he gets a chance next year."
What do you think 49er fans? Will Alex Smith be a 49er next year? Do you feel bad for him?