Veteran QB Alex Smith retires from NFL after 16 seasons

Veteran quarterback Alex Smith announced his retirement Monday on Instagram. Smith, 36, spent his final three seasons with the Washington Football Team, becoming a free agent in March.

Smith played 16 seasons in the NFL and battled severe leg injuries to become 2020 Comeback Player of the Year. He spent his first eight seasons with the San Francisco 49ers, and played for the Kansas City Chiefs from 2013 through 2017 before being traded to Washington in 2018.

Smith sustained a multiple fractures in his right leg in his first season with Washington. The injuries and life-threatening infections required 17 surgeries. He missed six games in 2018 and the entire 2019 season, but returned to the field Oct. 11. Smith went on to post a 5-1 record and threw six touchdown passes in eight appearances last season.

Smith said in a video he posted to Instagram: “I want to say thank you for believing in me and thank you for helping me believe in myself and in the impossible. Because even though I’ve got plenty of snaps left in me, after 16 years of giving this game everything I’ve got, I can’t wait to see what else is possible. But first, I’m going to take a little time to enjoy a few of those walks with my wife. My kids have no idea what’s coming for them in the backyard.”

Veteran QB Alex Smith announces retirement


Editorial credit: Glenn W. Walker /