Sports | April 29, 2020 12:30 pm

Pro Bowl QB Alex Smith Attempting NFL Comeback After 17 Leg Surgeries

Smith suffered a broken right fibula and tibia during a game in 2018

Alex Smith wants to return to football
Washington Redskins quarterback Alex Smith on crutches.
John McDonnell/The Washington Post via Getty

Despite undergoing 17 leg surgeries after suffering a gruesome injury during a game while playing quarterback for the Washington Redskins, Alex Smith is attempting to make a return to the NFL.

Smith, who will be 36 by the time the season starts, endured a broken right fibula and tibia during a game in November of 2018.

The brutal injury led to a case of sepsis (a life-threatening condition that happens when a person’s body has an extreme response to an infection) and Smith almost had to have his leg amputated.

ESPN’s E60 documented Smith’s recovery and rehab process during an episode dubbed Project 11 — a reference to Smith’s number on the football field — that will debut on Friday at 7:30 p.m. ET on the Worldwide Leader.

In the show, Smith says a return to NFL football “might not be out of the question.”

The No. 1 pick of the 2005 draft has also gone on the record in the past about his intention to attempt an NFL comeback.

“No NFL player has ever been through what Alex Smith has,” E60 executive producer Andy Tennant told CNN. “He’s normally a very private person but he wanted to document his road to recovery as well and as detailed as possible, with the hope that future players could use it as a road map.”

Smith suffered his gruesome leg injury 33 years to the day that ex-Washington quarterback Joe Theismann’s career was ended by a brutal leg injury.

“I saw a pile of people go down, and then I saw Alex’s leg in the position it was in. And I turned away after that. It brought back vivid memories,” Theismann told the Associated Press following Smith’s injury.

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