Alex Smith in emergency surgery, done for 2018

Brian Tinsman
November 18, 2018 - 6:11 pm
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Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

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Nobody watching Sunday's Redskins-Texans game was surprised by the news, but Jay Gruden made it official when he announced quarterback Alex Smith suffered a broken tibia and fibula and would be rushed into surgery, ending his 2018 season.

Smith was initially assessed on an X-ray machine in the stadium but was immediately sent to the hospital. Gruden, for what it's worth, expressed optimism in his recovery.

"I know it was very painful for him and heartbreaking for a lot of people. He's a great guy and a hard worker and one of the key leaders on this football team," he told the media after the game. "These things happen in pro football, unfortunately. You just hate to see them happen to a guy like Alex.

"But knowing the type of guy that he is, he'll bounce back."

Teammates were obviously shaken up after seeing the play, sad to lose a starting quarterback and a very popular locker room presence.

"Your heart drops when something like that happens. He's such a great person," running back Adrian Peterson said after the game. "The worst feeling. I actually seen the play and I knew immediately that his season was over. 

"I felt like he was in his groove. Just to see him go down with pain in his eyes--it was hard."

The injury takes a dicey quarterback situation and throws it into distress, with just three days to prepare for Dallas on Thanksgiving.

The team is immediately in the market for a backup quarterback for Colt McCoy, who came into the game and provided a spark for the offense. According to multiple reports in the media, the Redskins were on the phone with free agent quarterbacks around the league and had multiple options converging on Ashburn before the game was over. 

Ready or not, the Redskins will sign at least one option, likely on Monday. That player will be active for the team on Thursday in Dallas. Substantial reinforcements for the injury-plagued offensive line are unlikely.

Let the backup competition begin.

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