As he watched from the sideline, an admittedly painful experience after losing his starting job because of an injury, Alex Smith believed things would eventually work out. He just didn’t know where.
“I had no idea where my opportunity would be, where it would come. No idea,” he said. “I guess I did have faith that it was going to come at some point, that I was going to get another opportunity. Didn’t know where or what, but I was determined to stay ready and continue to work. So when it did come, I’d be ready. When this came up, I jumped on it. This was a no-brainer for me.”
The no-brainer was in Kansas City, where the Chiefs traded for the 49ers after Smith had lost his job last year to Colin Kaepernick. As Kaepernick went on a roll and got the 49ers all the way to the Super Bowl, Smith mostly suffered in silence, realizing he’d have to pursue the rest of his career elsewhere.
Turns out the wait was worth it. Smith is off to a 3-0 start, he hasn’t committed a single turnover and the Chiefs’ resurgence has been remarkable coming off a 2-14 season.
“I just appreciate it,” said Smith, the No. 1 overall pick in 2005, the same year Aaron Rodgers went to the Packers late in the first round. “I’ve been through a lot, and you appreciate the opportunity to be one of 32 guys to get to do this and know how fragile that is and not to take it for granted. So you bust your tail every single day, every week. You’ve got to go out there and prove yourself every week. That’s the bottom line in this league. You’re only as good as your last game.”