The Redskins and Kansas City Chiefs agreed to a trade on Jan. 31 for the veteran passer. Washington also gave up a third-round pick plus corner Kendall Fuller and immediately agreed to a multiyear extension with Smith. The move will become official after the new league year begins at 4 p.m. on March 14,.
In his first public comments since the trade, Smith told San Francisco radio station KNBR 680 on Thursday that he couldn’t wait to play for Washington. Smith started the past five years in Kansas City, but the Chiefs drafted quarterback Patrick Mahomes in the first round last spring and plan on starting him.
“I’m jacked. I’m really excited,” Smith told the radio station via 247sports.com while preparing to play in the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am. “Once I found out that obviously things in Kansas City were going in a different direction, I was pumped for the opportunity. When Washington came calling, I was hopeful that was a possible destination. I’m jacked that it worked out. They wanted me and the feeling was mutual.”
The Redskins traded for him rather than try to work out a long-term deal with Kirk Cousins, their starter the past three seasons. They did not want to use the franchise tag for a third year at a cost of $34.5 million. Cousins will become the most attractive quarterback on the market.
Smith became a less expensive fallback option for Washington as he’ll count only $17 million on the salary cap in 2018. He’s coming off his best season, having established career highs in yards (4,042) and touchdown passes (26) and tying a career best in yards per pass attempt (8.0). He threw only five interceptions.
The No. 1 pick in the 2005 draft spent the first seven seasons of his career playing with San Francisco.
Smith, who turns 34 in May, said he has had more “fun than I ever have” the last five or six years and isn’t close to retirement.
“My body feels great,” he said. “I can’t see the horizon at this point. I don’t see it in the near future. I love what I’m doing too much.”