Circling back to Josh Freeman

SANTA CLARA, Calif. -- Earlier this week, we examined if quarterback Josh Freeman would interest the San Francisco 49ers in a trade.

Now, the scenario has changed. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers released the 25-year-old former starter outright Thursday. He is free to sign with any team.

Answer me this: If starter Colin Kaepernick were to get injured, do the 49ers have a better option than Freeman on the roster? It is a question the 49ers have to be currently asking themselves.

When Freeman does land, I’d be surprised if it’s with the 49ers. He will have better chances to play elsewhere and the need isn’t pressing.

But here’s why I wouldn’t be shocked if the 49ers didn’t, at least, consider talking to Freeman: Jim Harbaugh loves quarterbacks.

The 49ers just signed John Skelton. Freeman is a better short- and long-term prospect than Skelton. Freeman is also a better option that Colt McCoy, the 49ers’ current No. 2, who could potentially be unseated by Skelton soon. I think Harbaugh would smile himself to sleep at the thought of a quarterback stable of Kaepernick, Skelton and Freeman.

Again, there are obstacles in the way of making it happen, but there are reasons to believe such a pairing is intriguing to San Francisco.