Alex Smith is one of the greatest stories of 2020. The Washington quarterback will no doubt win the NFL Comeback Player of the Year Award considering what he was able to accomplish this season in returning from a horrific injury. In 2018, Smith suffered a compound fracture to his right leg that led to life-threatening sepsis requiring 17 surgeries to prevent amputation.
After months of rehab, Smith returned to the field this year and compiled a 5-1 record as a starter in leading Washington to the NFC East title.
After his inspiring comeback, online sportsbook Bovada is now listing odds on whether Smith will retire, with the No option slightly favored at -125 and Yes coming back at -115.
Will Alex Smith Retire?
Odds as of January 14 at Bovada
Why Alex Smith Should Retire
After showing this year that he can still play in the NFL, there is nothing else that Alex Smith needs to prove. The 36-year-old returned from one of the worst injuries imaginable and to see him come back on the field this year was truly something special. Even if he had played just one down, it would still be one of the best comeback stories. The fact that he led Washington to a division title is even more remarkable.
Right now the odds of Alex Smith retiring favor him returning at -125 but not by much, with the odds of him calling it a career just slightly behind at -115. Smith started six games this season and threw for 1,582 yards and six touchdowns.
Football is a very aggressive and hard-hitting sport, so for Smith to even risk coming back at all was a huge deal. That he was able to return and actually play in games is in itself a victory.
The former No. 1 pick in the 2005 draft has had a solid career with the San Francisco 49ers and Washington. He is entering the final year of his contract and management might want to keep him as a backup to Taylor Heinicke or another quarterback if they decide to make a move for one. For Smith, it will come down to weighing the option of being with his family or finishing out his contract.
Smith Is A True Inspiration
Alex Smith has gained the admiration of all his peers for his courageous comeback. After the Tampa Bay Buccaneers knocked Washington out of the playoffs, Tom Brady had this to say to him:
"Hey, I’m so proud of you, bro, you’re unbelievable, you know that? You’re an inspiration to all of us.”
Smith, who missed the playoff game against the Buccaneers due to a calf injury, is no doubt an inspiration to any athlete who has suffered a severe injury. He showed that through rehab and the will to return, anything is possible.
I think, though, that we’ve seen the last of Smith, who has made a lot of money over his career and will choose to spend time with his wife and three children, rather than put himself at risk of another injury if he were to play.