Alex Smith reportedly has “no animosity” for Washington Football Team

Washington Football Team v Philadelphia Eagles
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In recent comments to GQ, Washington quarterback Alex Smith provided frank, candid comments regarding his belief that the team “didn’t want me there” as he tried to return from a badly-broken leg. Smith now seems to regretting the impact his comments had.

“Seems to be” becomes the key phrase because Smith didn’t go on the record to explain the situation. Instead, someone leaked more information about the situation to JP Finlay of 106.7 The Fan in D.C.

I talked to a source close to Alex yesterday,” Finlay said. “One thing they want to make clear is that Alex was talking to a reporter that didn’t know anything about football, and if you go back, the first story that came out had to be edited because Alex said ‘IR’ and the reporter thought that meant ‘high arm.’ This is not a dude that knows football. And that’s not a shot. I don’t know lifestyle; I couldn’t go write a fashion piece. I could write about football because that’s my lane. . . . The message from the source I talked to close to Alex is that, listen, there’s no animosity towards the organization. None of those comments were meant to make anybody mad. He was simply telling the story of what happened.”

There’s no denial or dispute regarding the words Smith used when speaking to Clay Skipper of GQ. And so what if Skipper thought he heard “high arm” instead of “IR”? Does that make the quotes he attributed to Smith incorrect?

He said what he said, and no one is saying he didn’t say it. Smith’s concern seems to be not what he said or what was written but the reaction to it.

To his credit, Smith isn’t trying to say he didn’t say what he said. He said it. He presumably meant it. He just didn’t mean for it to be interpreted as criticism of the team.

But how could he not? He chose strong words that painted a clear picture that the team didn’t want Smith back on the field. Unless and until he uses different words or says that the words he used weren’t the words that were published, neither Smith nor any source close to him should complain about the manner in which those who see and hear the words react to them.

40 responses to “Alex Smith reportedly has “no animosity” for Washington Football Team

  1. There’s a massive assumption that GQ is providing quality journalism on this during an era of pathetic levels of journalism from one end of the globe to the other.

    I don’t give Alex Smith a pass but I do give him the benefit of the doubt, yes.

  2. Stating a thing isn’t always a criticism. Sometimes it’s just a statement of how a person sees a thing, with no judgment or malice attached to it. He probably was a component the team failed to factor in because they assumed he was done. So what?

  3. Of course they would have rather he retired and not collected his guaranteed salary. No one thought he could make it back to play. The Football Team didn’t either.

    I think Smith understands that and isn’t blaming the Football Team for how he was treated.

  4. I’m pretty sure this is obvious. At not point he didn’t slander WFT and the only way any of his talk can be seen as negative is if somebody with a fragile ego takes it that way.

    Good thing the WFT doesn’t have anybody with fragile egos that’s involved with management.

  5. “They tried to High arm me” does matter because everyone who read the quote was speculating on what it meant. DC talk radio was all over it as if it meant the team was trying to force him to retire. “They tried to IR me” makes sense in the context of what Smith was coming back from and would be perceived as less aggressive by the team, especially considering the relaxed IR rules this year.

  6. In the same breath, you’ll hear WFT has found a QB and waived Alex Smith. The feel good story is over.

  7. If I’m an NFL player, I’m never saying another word to a journalist. There is zero upside.

  8. It was obvious they didn’t expect him back and he wasn’t in their plans. His acknowledgement of that shouldn’t be controversial.

  9. Or, he understands the nature of the business, and so do his bosses.
    It’s not that big of a deal.

  10. Nothing here was about animus. It was out of legitimate concern for his well-being!

    Not even we fans wanted for him to try to play football again. We wanted him to retire, enjoy his family and his millions! The last thing we wanted to see was him getting hurt again. You have to also remember those of us old enough to have seen Joe Theisman go through that!

    And watching him at the end of the season was also scary. I know it wasn’t the original injury, but his inability to move and protect himself was scary. This could have led to a reinjury of the other leg. I don’t want to ever see that again! I hope he retires!

    All of us need to move on!

  11. I totally get what Smith was trying to say. Im pretty sure “they” in his context stands for “generic FO people who of course wouldn’t want a 36 year old qb coming off a bad injury”. I get how literally it does seem like a shot at WFT front office and coaching staff, but I get what Alex Smith was trying to say. He doesn’t hold animosity because the quotes weren’t about anyone specific. A better phrased comment would have been “nobody would have wanted me there”.

  12. Not sure I would trust anything that a guy named “Skipper” would write about football.

    Just sayin’..


  13. Why would Alex have any animosity? Seems like someone trying to drum up controversy. It’s business… it’s a new coaching staff… he had a really bad injury to his leg.. It is what it is.

  14. Alex Smith is one of the least controversial players in the NFL.
    He’s faced every adverse situation with grace.
    Whatever he’s said is the truth, and not a slam against the team anyways.
    Big fuss over nothing.

  15. MiaButtreeks says:
    February 26, 2021 at 1:08 am
    If I’m an NFL player, I’m never saying another word to a journalist. There is zero upside.

    Lol at everyone saying players shouldn’t talk to the media but we are all here for the sports stories written by…guess who!

  16. Smith was the first overall pick and had a different coordinator every year until Harbaugh was hired. He messed up his shoulder so badly and was told to play with the injury and it still has an effect on his arm strength. He never pouted with Kaepernick or Mahomes. He is not going to put now. Watson and Wilson need to take notes but they won’t.

  17. Now, more and more every time I read an article, I can see why Marshawn Lynch never answered any questions.

  18. If someone was guaranteed to pay me $18 million this year, and $20 million next year, I would “no animosity” for them either. Seriously.

  19. It seems obvious to me that Smith was simply telling an accurate account of what happened. I didn’t see it as criticism of the team, and I doubt the team did, either. Of course they didn’t want him to come back; they believed he would likely re-injure the leg and adversely affect the rest of his life. They hoped Haskins would develop and make Smith expendable, but this isn’t a knock on Smith, it’s a genuine hope that he moves on into a happy post-football life. No one, NO ONE, had any reason to believe he could come back from the injury he sustained.

  20. Its just a story being taken out of context. He was trying to accentuate the point that no one expected him to come back and do so well. It’s just meant to be a story about his perseverance. It’s media reporters who chose to turn it into something negative.

  21. 6.5×55 says:
    February 25, 2021 at 11:12 pm
    Stating a thing isn’t always a criticism. Sometimes it’s just a statement of how a person sees a thing, with no judgment or malice attached to it.

    This, 100%. People try too hard to read in between the lines or they project their own feelings onto a situation that they have no idea about. Making a statement isn’t automatically “complaining”.

  22. People seem to like reporting that goes along with the world view they have previously established. One thing I tell my students is the truth isn’t beholden to your world view. The truth is the truth and it’s with pursuing.

  23. I will be honest i miss the old days when everything was kept in house. Now Pro sports have become soap operas with the daily “do you hear what he said” “Did you see what they did to him” “Did you hear what they called him” “I heard that Joey isn’t happy at work and might get another job” with the media playing to role of the gossiping neighbor who is into everyone business but their own. Bring back the old days.

  24. I think he was just saying that NO one thought he could come back. The new regime was not expecting him to be part of the future because the injury and weren’t focused at all on him playing. Then he suprises everyone and they are like WTF do we do now.

    Heck,the chatter in DC before he played his first game was that Rivera should not take the risk of playing him again because his comeback was so risky. Rivera and the team decided to give him his chance anyway so yea, Alex should have no ill will against the team.

    How about you focus on whats really wrong in DC and drum up some more momentum on the real problem there. #FIREDANSYNDER

  25. I never thought he would take a snap again After that injury , let alone the complications with his recovery. Is it crazy to think WFT felt the same? They also kept paying him.

    You know, I’ve never been a huge fan of Alex the qb, but like others said he’s had a billion coaches so it’s hard to gather what his career could have been.

    With all of that, he’s been a consumate professional his entire career. He never complained when he got ping ponged around and guys got drafted to take his spot.
    Seemed like a guy who appreciated the money and life that football provided him, and even kept his spirits up after a horrible injury.

    I’m gonna guess we’re not going to see him on a documentary about broke athletes.

  26. mschurm1 says:
    February 26, 2021 at 2:42 am
    Lately I’ve been very worried that Alex has animosity toward the WFT.
    LOL – best line of the day so far

  27. Did you see how gruesome that leg injury was? Of course he wasn’t in the WFT’s plans. No one expected him to come back. No one wanted him to get injured further. When he showed he could play, the team gave him a chance. Great show of perseverance Alex. Good luck to you whether you continue to play or not!

  28. Alex Smith took three imperfect teams to the playoffs, despite an ongoing clown show of coaching and roster craziness around him. He survived the merry-go-round of lousy coaches in SF, getting dumped for Kaepernick, starting with an unproven team in KC, and nearly losing his leg and his life with Washington.

    I’d say the guy has earned the right to tell it like it is.

  29. The entire country saw Alex’s leg in the TV special. Of course they didn’t think he was coming back because nobody has ever come back from something like that. He acts like they were supposed to instantly make him the #1 starter with COVID happening, no preseason reps and a 1st round draft pick that they wanted to take a look at.

    Eventually he got his chance and couldn’t finish the season because of said leg. What is the confusion ?

  30. I’ll say what I said in the initial article.

    No other player has came back from the injury Alex had.

    The team would be dumb not to prepare as if he wouldn’t be back. That’s what it means. The team did what the team, and all teams (*surely*) Would have done. They went forward not expecting him to play again.

    Even when he suited up, it was far from a sure thing he played at a level that could win games in this league.

    That’s not drama, that’s real life. Stop, the team did what the team had to do. Alex did what he had to do, the rest is history

  31. Alex Smith has a PR problem and has nothing to do with the WFT. He was picked first overall in 2005 and another QB had to wait till #24 pick to hear his name called. They are forever linked together in the QB class of 2005 and Alex has never come close to what the other guy has done.

  32. Oh my gosh what controversy! Smith couldn’t even pass a physical July before the season and the team had questions whether he was healthy enough to play, in a season that began as a rebuilding effort centered on youth movement.


    (/sarcasm off)

  33. Journalism 101 – seek corroborating information. Has anyone reached out to the team or other sources and found out what Rivera actually said or didn’t say? Or is journalism now doing one interview and running rampant with wild speculations after the fact. “They didn’t have me in their plans.” Ok, lets dig deeper. What specifically was said or not said that lead you to believe that. Etc. etc. Come on guys this is basic journalism (or the lack thereof).

  34. whatjusthapped says:
    February 26, 2021 at 12:30 pm

    Alex Smith has a PR problem and has nothing to do with the WFT. He was picked first overall in 2005 and another QB had to wait till #24 pick to hear his name called. They are forever linked together in the QB class of 2005 and Alex has never come close to what the other guy has done.


    PR problem? He was picked by a lousy team with terrible coaching, spent years in the desert before Harbaugh turned the ship around. He took both the 49ers and Chiefs to the divisional round and just went 5-1 and into the playoffs with a Washington team in full rebuild.

    Is that underachieving, or is Rodgers only having one SB ring underachieving? Personally, I think both guys have done about as well as possible with the lots they’ve been given. Anyone who knows football knows the different circumstances they’ve faced.

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