Alex Smith completes his first pass with his family in attendance. #WashingtonFootball
— NFL (@NFL) October 11, 2020
There’s defying the odds and then there’s what Alex Smith did. As was chronicled in excruciating detail in an E:60 documentary, Smith nearly lost his left leg after a compound fracture of his tibia and fibula against the Houston Texans in November of 2018.
A serious infection resulted in doctors needed to remove most of the muscle tissue in Smith’s lower leg in what is called a debridement, and the major concerns were first, if he would survive, then if his leg would survive, then if he would walk again.
The notion of his football career coming back into the picture seemed exceedingly far-fetched. But on Sunday, Smith returned to an NFL field in a heavy, emotional moment, with his family watching on from the stands.
Alex Smith gets a standing ovation from his family while getting into his first game since 2018 🙏
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) October 11, 2020
It is simultaneously a triumphant moment and one which provides massive anxiety for anyone watching, given what Smith has been through, and the fear of re-injury. Smith’s return is a stunning success of the human spirit, and all that can be hoped for is that he continues to remain healthy.