Ron Rivera: Alex Smith requested his release from Washington originally appeared on NBC Sports Washington
The Washington Football Team announced Friday that it was officially releasing quarterback Alex Smith in a move that was widely expected even after he won NFL Comeback Player of the Year this season.
“I had a chance to meet with Alex Smith this week and we had a very honest and real discussion,” head coach Ron Rivera said in a statement. “We had the chance to reflect on the 2020 season and talk about moving forward into next year. After the conclusion of that meeting we decided that it would be best for both parties to move on and we will be granting Alex his request to be released.
“I want to thank Alex for his contributions this past year. He made such an impact on our young roster and his leadership was one of the key factors in our late season success and in making the playoffs for the first time since 2015. Everyone here in Washington wishes Alex and his family the best going forward and appreciates all that he gave to our organization.”
Smith revealed in an interview with GQ Magazine last month that it was clear the new regime under Rivera wanted to move on. The veteran quarterback said he “threw a wrench in the team’s plans” by making his comeback from a compound fracture in his leg that cost him nearly two years of his career.
Washington saved about $15 million in cap space by cutting Smith, who went 5-1 as a starter last season but showed a lack of mobility and posted his lowest passer rating (78.5) since 2007. At 36 years old, he will now get the chance to test free agency for the first time in his career.