Veteran quarterback Alex Smith is calling it a career after 16 seasons in the NFL, he announced on Instagram.
"Because even though I have 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," Smith said.
The 36-year-old's retirement follows his incredible comeback campaign. Smith missed the entire 2019 season due to a serious leg injury suffered in 2018, but he returned under center for the Washington Football Team in 2020 during a Week 5 game against the Los Angeles Rams. The contest marked his first snap in 693 days.
Washington relied on Smith as its primary starting quarterback for the majority of the 2020 campaign, and he posted a 5-1 record and won Comeback Player of the Year for his efforts. The two sides later mutually agreed to part ways following the season.
Washington owner Dan Snyder and his wife Tanya congratulated Smith on his storied career and called his 2020 resurgence "the greatest comeback in professional sports history."
Smith played for three clubs since the San Francisco 49ers drafted him first overall in the 2005 NFL Draft. After a rocky start to his career, Smith developed into a polished passer with the Niners before being dealt to the Kansas City Chiefs in 2013. Smith earned the reputation of being a consistent quarterback during his five-year tenure with the Chiefs before finishing his career in Washington.
The Utah product ends his time in the NFL with three Pro Bowl nods, a 99-67-1 record, and 199 touchdowns to 109 interceptions.