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Alex Smith - Washington Football Team
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Former Ute Alex Smith Announces Retirement From NFL

Alex Smith #11 of the Washington Football Team celebrates after scoring a touchdown in the fourth quarter against the New York Giants at FedExField on November 08, 2020 in Landover, Maryland. (Photo by Greg Fiume/Getty Images)

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – Former Utah Utes legend and NFL quarterback Alex Smith is retiring after a long, successful NFL career.

His wife, Liz Smith, posted a video to her Instagram account announcing the news.

“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, but first I am going to take a little time to enjoy a few of those walks with my wife and my kids have no idea what’s coming for them in the backyard,” Smith announced his retirement.


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A post shared by Elizabeth Smith (@lizbsmith11)

Smith’s last years in the NFL were hard but meaningful. He suffered what could have easily been a career-ending leg injury but came back to take snaps for the Washington Football Team in the 2020 season.

In the video, Smith talks about how the devastating leg injury impacted him and his family.

“Two years ago, I was stuck in a wheelchair, staring down at my mangled leg wondering if I’d ever be able to go on a walk with my wife again, or play games with my kids in the yard,” Smith said, “Putting my helmet back on was the farthest thing from my mind, I just kept asking myself all this for a stupid game? But then someone did something that changed my recovery completely. He put a football back in my hands.”

The Utah Utes legend was drafted in 2005. During his NFL career, he played for the San Fransisco 49ers, Kansas City Chiefs and the Washington Football Team.

In the video, Smith remembers his college days.

“I was a skinny, no-name recruit who wasn’t even supposed to play in college, let alone go to New York as a Heisman finalist, or be the first to have his name called on Draft night,” Smith remembered.

“To everyone out there, whether you’re a part of Niner Nation, the Chiefs Kingdom or the Burgandy and Gold, I thank you. To all the men I had the privilege of standing with and playing alongside, thank you. I want to say thank you for believing in me and thank you for helping me believe in myself,” Smith said in the video.

He retires with 174 games played and 199 touchdowns but what he will be remembered for most is his story of resilience.