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QB snapshot: Alex Smith

A quick observation of quarterback Alex Smith and how he played in the Kansas City Chiefs' 29-16 loss to the Denver Broncos in Week 13:

To judge from the passer ratings of the quarterbacks in the game, it would be easy to conclude that Smith outplayed Denver's Peyton Manning. Smith had a passer rating of 95.0, Manning 85.3.

This is a case of stats being misleading. Smith was outplayed by his counterpart. He did have a better completion percentage (65.2 percent to 50 percent for Manning) and threw a pair of touchdown passes, the same as Manning. But Smith threw the game's only interception and was greatly outnumbered in clutch throws by Manning. The Broncos converted 9 of 21 third-down plays, the Chiefs just 1-of-9.

Interestingly, Smith also had a better passer rating than Oakland's Derek Carr in the Raiders' 24-20 victory over the Chiefs in the previous game. Smith had a worse passer rating than his counterpart in his two outings before that, both Kansas City victories.