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Redskins Got Fleeced For Smith; Still Are 1st In The NFC East; Smith On Pace For Pro Bowl Season

NFL: Carolina Panthers at Washington Redskins Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

I was no fan of the Alex Smith trade and I still am not. I thought the trade was horrible. When news of Smith’s trade to the Redskins started to leak and word of his new contract along with the news that Kendall Fuller would no longer be a Redskin here were some of my reactions:

Picks and a player. Quite swell. Seriously ‘special’ move.

The time frame doesnt make sense beyond 2 years. Smith is 34. This only works if they didnt trade away a key piece of the defense and kept picks through the 3rd round and pick up a QB along the way in the draft.

Way to go Andy. Got your future QB already, created millions in cap space and got a mid round pick. Thats the way to do it.

I even had this gem

Alex Smith is now making more guaranteed money than any other QB in the NFL. The contract is absurd.

The women in my life have told me about being loud and wrong.

Alex Smith is not making more guaranteed money than any other QB in the NFL but he is still getting paid a pretty penny. Smith’s is guaranteed 55 million dollars as a part of his new deal which makes it virtually impossible to move on from him before a couple of seasons pass.

Alex Smith is 34 and is not going to get better beyond what we know his baseline of play is.

Alex Smith’s career year last season was an anomaly. Andy Reid sold stock at the right time.

I will not deny this is a damned if you do damned if you don’t situation for the Redskins. Kirk Cousins was gone. Colt McCoy is not a starter. The Redskins had no plans to move up in the draft and the free agent options consisted of A.J. McCarron and Case Keenum. Smith was available so they went for it. Of course they did but for God’s sake 55 million AND Kendall Fuller AND a third round pick? We don’t pay $8.99 / lb for overripe bananas folks. You shop for value and you only pay for premium and rare ingredients. Smith is not that.

Aside from bananas it makes me think about locksmiths. You have lost your key (starting QB) and you need to get back into your place (be competitive and win). Your particular key is your sole resource (QBs run the offense) you do not have a stash of hidden keys nearby (You have not properly prepared to get a new QB). You call a locksmith (NFL teams) because there is no way you are breaking into your own place (field a team with no viable QB at all) and the one locksmith that is still open at 10pm (the team that is willing to trade) charges you $250 dollars to open your door because they know you basically have no other option and they are giving you a premium specialized service.

I hope ya’ll followed that but here is my point. The Redskins got taken for a ride and paid full price and currently aren’t getting the value out of Smith that they paid for.

I don’t think Alex Smith is a bad QB. I think he is decent but to fact of the matter to me is he is not going to get much better than he is now. We have too much on tape and paper to objectively say otherwise. Alex Smith is not playing well as a Redskin right now and it is almost halfway through the season. He may play better but the results and production will likely be marginal. I was floored by people who said it looked like he was getting more comfortable. It looked the exact opposite to me this past Sunday. Smith clearly is not comfortable in this offense or with its options. We can and do talk for hours about the quality of this team. The coach has said it best and has set the expectation for the season and for the play of this team. The team is built and they have to win right now.

To me right now means RIGHT NOW like this season and at the latest next season. Alex is not Benjamin Button either and I know some of you all enjoyed that picture of him running on the ocean floor with a rock but that exercise did not improve his straight line speed or arm accuracy.

But guess what? The team IS built to win now. Through a series of fortunate events this team HAS planned and lucked into some key players who are carrying this team. They ran into an ageless Adrian Peterson they have been building the defense for a few years now and those elements are carrying the team. The law of gravity applies here though and what comes up must come down. The team is not playing in a sustainable way. The team has great pieces but what if Adrian Peterson can’t play? What if one of the Bama boys gets hurt? What if the defense simply has a bad game? Who will be left to carry the team? It certainly won’t be Smith that that is what’s scary and disappointing.

We can not count on our QB to play from behind. We can’t count on our QB to put the team on his back. We can’t count on our QB to make that special throw. Smith is going to compete with very few QBs in a shootout situation. You need that in the NFL to make it all the way. The Redskins don’t have it.

Before you invoke Trent Dilfer or the 2017 Jaguars I will remind you it is neither 1999 (they cant even fall on guys anymore) and the Jaguars lost in the AFC title game and did not go all the way.

The irony in all of this was I looked at Smith’s numbers and despite the eye test Smith is actually on pace for another Pro Bowl season. If Smith continues his current production he will finish the season with 3,688 passing yards, 18.6 TDs, 5.3 INTs, and a 62% completion rating. What is funny is if I see this guy run out of bounds on 3rd down during a close game in the 4th quarter with 200 passing yards under his belt I might blow a gasket and yet the team is winning. The bit of good news is like getting a warm pitcher of Corona at happy hour. You’ll take it but you know it isnt good for you in the long run and in the grand scheme of things.

What often happens in the comments section is people will revert to the ‘why can’t you enjoy it’ argument. The team won. Shut up be happy. My friends accepting mediocrity in the face of defeat OR victory is something I can not do. There are times I watch this team play and I feel ill. I must point out where the team can do better because I love my Skins. My QB does not need to throw from 450 yards and 4 TDs for me to be happy. But I expect him to not look borderline incompetent at times, I expect him to hit open receivers, I expect him to under stand game situations, I expect him to see open receivers. These are all familiar criticisms of past Redskin starting QBs so I think I’m being pretty fair. Unfortunately I don’t expect Smith to have some sort of epiphany and but it all together next week or this season.

The Redskins are first in the division that is lit AF. They are in control of their own destiny. We know there are going to be a lot of challenges. We know there are going to be tough moments where the team has to play from behind. The team will have to lift each other up and pick up the slack when things are going well for one aspect of it. The defense has proven it can do it. Now the question is can and will the offense do it for the defense when we need it most?

The team may have payed $8.99/ lb for overripe bananas or payed $250 to get into their own apartment will there be times this season where the expense will finally seem worth it? I won’t hold my breath.