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Washington QB Smith cleared for practice after near-death experience from horrific leg injury



The Washington Football Team activated Alex Smith off the physically unable to perform (PUP) list on Sunday following a horrific leg injury in 2018.

Smith developed life-threatening sepsis and required 17 surgeries to prevent his leg from being amputated after the veteran NFL quarterback suffered a compound fracture of his tibia and fibula two years ago.

However, the 36-year-old and three-time Pro Bowler was cleared for football activity on Sunday, capping a remarkable recovery.

Smith’s wife Elizabeth shared a video on social media as the family celebrated the former San Francisco 49ers and Kansas City Chiefs quarterback’s return.

It remains to be seen just what Smith’s role looks like in Washington, where Ron Rivera is head coach and also has 2019 first-round draft pick Dwayne Haskins at his disposal.

But Smith’s story and his path back to the field, regardless of the ultimate outcome, has been celebrated across the league.

Chiefs coach Andy Reid, who worked with Smith from 2013 to 2017, said: “How great is that [coming off the PUP list]? I’m so happy for him. I know how he is – he’s dirty tough and he loves playing the game.

“He didn’t want to end the way it ended with the leg, so now he’s back. We all saw the special on him and the rehab that he went through, that day-in and day-out grind of the rehab, so I’m happy for him.

“I’m very, very happy for him, and I’m happy for the Washington team too.”

Smith, who went down in November 2018, led Washington to a 6-3 record in 2018, completing 205 of 328 passes for 2,180 yards, 10 touchdown and five interceptions before being sidelined.

Washington are scheduled to open their 2020 season against the Philadelphia Eagles on September 13.

Published 17 Aug 2020, 06:30 IST





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