Ron Rivera provided his weekly reminder that quarterback Alex Smith is part of the Washington Football Team and could play a role in the quarterback competition if healthy.
Rivera reiterated Monday that he believes Smith could vie for reps if cleared from a devastating knee injury that wiped out the entire 2019 season.
"This could be a very interesting challenge for us because of Alex Smith," Rivera said, via the Washington Post's Nicki Jhabvala. "If Alex is healthy and continues to get healthy and we do activate him, he's going to be in the throes of this competition. It's going to unfold I think very nicely for us as a football team. This competition is only going to make you better, it's going to push the young guys as well. So I just feel really good about what we're going to be doing as we start going forward. It'll be a very challenging situation to make sure everybody's reps are equitable and their competition is the same."
Smith remains on the physically unable to perform list as he continues rehabbing.
Rivera, at least once a week, has reminded the world that Smith could be part of the QB competition if cleared. Two weeks ago, Rivera noted that Smith would dive into the competition if healthy. Last week, he said he could "envision" the veteran QB playing a role.
Are the weekly comments on Smith simply feeding chum to the local reporters who ask about the veteran QB? Is it to light a fire under Dwayne Haskins, a reminder to the young QB nothing will be handed out? Does Rivera look at Smith and see his best chance to quickly put a winner on the field? Like most things in life, it's probably a bit of everything stirred together.
The reality is that with Smith on the PUP list, we're still several strides from the QB legitimately entering the fray. Coach speak can sometimes inspire, but it can't heal -- at least not that we're aware of, yet.
Smith suffered a catastrophic injury that most believed would end his career. That he's even considered close to a comeback is a great story. It's a story that has several chapters to go before he unseats Haskins to take the starting gig.