WASHINGTON — Redskins quarterback Alex Smith left the game against the Houston Texans after suffering a gruesome leg injury in the third quarter of the game.
At a postgame news conference, Coach Jay Gruden announced Smith had a broken tibia and fibula, and will have surgery “right away.”
“I know it was very painful for him and, you know, heartbreaking for a lot of people,” Gruden said. “You know he’s a great guy and a hard worker and one of the key leaders on this football team.”
On a third-down pass play, Smith’s leg was bent awkwardly on a sack by J.J. Watt and had to be carted to the locker room. In a tweet, the team described it as an ankle injury and that Smith would not return.
Smith was then taken to a nearby hospital.
QB Alex Smith has been listed out with an ankle injury. #HOUvsWAS
— Washington Redskins (@Redskins) November 18, 2018
Smith was replaced by backup quarterback Colt McCoy, who Gruden said he has confidence in going forward.
“This is an opportunity for Colt, and I think he’ll take advantage of it,” he said.
The team narrowly lost to the Texans Sunday, 21-23.
Smith’s leg injury happens exactly 33 years after the infamous — and eerily similar — play that ended Redskins’ legend Joe Theismann’s career. The final score in that game was also 21-23, but that time, the Redskins came away with the victory.