Don’t tell Alex Smith about toughness.
The former Kansas City Chiefs and now Washington Football Team quarterback suffered what appeared to be a gruesome injury to his lower left leg or ankle area during Monday’s Week 13 contest versus the then-undefeated Pittsburgh Steelers.
Fortunately, the wound, which occurred in the second quarter after Washington’s center “cleated” Smith mid-play, was not on the same leg that the 36-year-old nearly needed to have amputated in 2018 due to a sepsis infection that required 17 surgeries to fix.
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The injury immediately drew comparisons to the famous “bloody sock” game from former Boston Red Sox ace Curt Schilling, who pitched his team to a pivotal Game 6 win in the 2004 ALCS on a torn ankle tendon which began bleeding out mid-game.
Like the three-time World Series champion, Smith was thankfully able to return to the field after Washington’s medical staff applied tape to stop the bleeding just ahead of halftime.
After the game, Smith elaborated on the scary leg gash when asked by reporters, saying the timing of the injury was actually “fortunate.”
Smith’s Savvy Move Confuses Refs, Leads to Points
On Monday night, the veteran passer was also indirectly responsible for the team’s first points of the night after a savvy clock move that caused “administrative issues” leading to a Washington 49-yard field goal in the closing seconds of the half.
After the intermission, the Football Team completed a stunning comeback to take down the Steelers, 23-17, in their own stadium, topped off by Smith’s 31-of-46 completions, 296 yards and fourth-quarter touchdown pass to TE Logan Thomas.
The inspiring performance led to a well-deserved heaping of praise and securing of the NFL’s Comeback Player of the Year award among the masses, including Houston Texans’ superstar JJ Watt and teammate Dwayne Haskins.
Smith, Washington Still in the Hunt for NFC Playoff Spot
Despite a dismal 5-7 record heading following Monday’s interconference matchup, Washington remains very much in the playoff picture thanks to an NFC East division currently topped by the 5-7 New York Giants. As Smith continued to work his way back from the broken leg turned life-threatening emergency, he wasn’t given much of a chance to play in the NFL in the public eye. However, the former No. 1 overall pick had other plans, getting officially cleared for football activity on August 16.
After a helmet-to-helmet hit knocked starter Kyle Allen out of the game for Washington in Week 5, Smith was unexpectedly thrust into action against the Los Angeles Rams with his family in attendance.
The battle-tested signal-caller has since played in four games, starting the last three for the Football Team and leading his squad to a 2-1 record. Through Week 12, Smith has completed 69% of his 155 pass attempts for 1,067 yards, 3 touchdowns and 5 interceptions.