Jay Gruden: Alex Smith has to win right away

AP

With quarterback Kirk Cousins on his way out the door, Washington traded with the Chiefs for quarterback Alex Smith. And coach Jay Gruden knows that Smith will need to hit the ground sprinting.

“He has got to get it down by the first game,” Gruden told reporters on Tuesday regarding the question of whether Smith has until the middle of the season to get up to speed on the terminology of the offense. “So I think he is already close to having it down for the most part. Each game plan is going to change with different concepts depending on who we play from time to time. But he needs to get it down and he will get it down. That’s why we got him here. That’s why we wanted to get a veteran quarterback here that can adjust to different schemes and alert on the fly.”

Then came the mandate for the team’s new quarterback.

“One thing about Alex, he is the smartest guy I have ever been around, without a doubt, and he is in great shape,” Smith said. “He can move around and he can handle a lot of different things. We are not in here to build the team around him, the team is built and he has to lead it like right now. This isn’t a two- or three-year process. This is a one-year process and we have got to win right away.”

Smith has the skill to do it, but does he have the talent around him? That remains to be seen, and the problem is that, if the team doesn’t win, Gruden (whether he means to or not) is positioning Smith to take the bulk of the blame for it.

Gruden still believes Smith can do it. Because Gruden thinks Smith has the confidence to do it.

“Confidence is very, very important and presence . . . is important,” Gruden said. “It gives other players confidence, and the whole job a quarterback has is obviously getting the most out of the people around you. That’s what I think he does as good as anybody. He’ll get the most out of the tight ends. He’ll get the most out of the backs. He’ll get the most out of the receivers and offensive line because they’re going to want to play for him and they’re going to feel confident that he’s going to make something happen in a positive way or at least give it everything he’s got and take responsibility if something doesn’t work out. [He’s] just a great leader-type guy and a good person, good player, that players all seem to react well to and play well with.”

Again, if that doesn’t happen, the blame won’t fall to the subpar players around him or to the people who gathered the players or those who coach them. It’s all on Alex Smith, according to the guy who has far less job security (frankly) than Smith enjoys.

21 responses to “Jay Gruden: Alex Smith has to win right away

  1. “He has got to get it down by the first game,” Gruden told reporters on Tuesday regarding the question of whether Smith has until the middle of the season to get up to speed on the terminology of the offense.

    Ok who is the moron reporter who asked if Smith had half the season to get the terminology down? That’s his job, That’s like asking a reporter if it would be OK to take 6 months to learn how to use a computer.

    I swear some of the clowns just need to hear themselves talk so they ask any inane question that comes to mind.

  2. Too bad several years after taking the job this idiot still hasn’t gotten it. You can run a dumpster fire for several years yet your new QB has 1 game to make it happen? One of the two won’t be around next year and I’ll let my money Smith will still be living in DC next year.

  3. A 5th-year coach with a win total of 28 and a high water mark of 9 wins says his new QB has to win now because the coach has already built a winner?

    As a lifelong Skins fan who has suffered two decades of Snyder’s debacles, this day comes at the earliest point ever for me, but here it is: Fire Gruden!!!!!!!!!

  4. Kick rocks Jay. You had your savior in RGIII and threw him away for a loser in Kurt whatshisface. If you don’t make the playoffs YOU are fired. And you have yourself to blame for screwing RGIII

  5. Both Grudens are in for a bad year. They just are not as good as they think they are.

    At least 2 teams in their respective divisions are better than they are and the coaches in their divisions are better than they are too.

    Maybe the overpaid one locked in one can give the other one a job

  6. Alex Smith is has been in the job for 13 years and knows how to win. It’s not always pretty but he can get the job done. He is the real deal unlike that miner gribbing fraud who left town. Mark my words, Washington will make the playoffs this year.

  7. Alex Smiths inability to move the ball when the chips are down will cost the ‘Skins at least two games this year.

  8. “One thing about Alex, he is the smartest guy I have ever been around, without a doubt, and he is in great shape,” Smith said.

    Eh – Alex Smith talking about himself? “Smith said”

  9. Jay doesn;t need to worry. Alex Smith will win a lot of regular season games for them. Wins in Playoff Games, NO. But regular season yes.

  10. In a way Gruden is right. The fans blamed the lack of post season games on the former QB, even though they never had a defense close to good enough to reach the playoffs or a running game able to get tough yardage.

    So, if the Redskins don’t win, the fans will quickly turn on Smith.

  11. The coach is depending on the newly acquired QB to save his career. Nice. Alex deserves much better than this train wreck.

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