Smith stumbled badly in Sunday's 18-16 playoff loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers, throwing for just 172 yards, with much of that coming during a fourth-quarter surge that fell short.
After leading an opening scoring drive, Smith's next six possessions resulted in a punt, pick, punt, fumble and two more punts before the Chiefs finally chiseled out a field goal at the end of the third quarter.
To be fair, Smith saw no help from the cast of weapons who helped Kansas City rally down the stretch.
The finger-pointing goes beyond Smith, who rolled into the game with the league's fourth-highest playoff passer rating among active quarterbacks. Still, the Chiefs starter -- like 90 percent of the league -- simply can't duplicate the play of the NFL's premier passers.
Smith is ideal for a ball-control offense that wins games by eliminating mistakes, but he's not the guy who can reliably scorch defenses in January with a litany of jaw-dropping throws all over the field. Sunday's loss was a total team letdown, but it's fair to ask if -- and how -- Smith's ceiling will suddenly rise next season.
It's not that Smith should be replaced -- plenty of teams would snatch him up -- but he certainly deserves competition. It would make sense for Reid to examine free agency and the draft for a quarterback or two who can furnish this attack with a different look.