He will be starting his first game in four years, and Seahawks fans hope he is ready for the spotlight this time.
He certainly picked up a lesson or two from Russell Wilson about durability and performing under pressure.
But the class is over, and the practical examination comes.
Sources: Seahawks are bracing for Russell Wilson to miss at least a month and possibly 6-8 weeks with his ruptured middle-finger tendon that likely requires surgery. Seattle thinking about Wilson’s long-term health. Barring an unexpectedly swift recovery, it’s Geno Smith’s show.
— Jeremy Fowler (@JFowlerESPN) October 8, 2021
Smith showed that he still has much left in his tank in Week 5 against the Los Angeles Rams.
The West Virginia alum kept the Seahawks in the game by throwing 10 passes for 131 yards and a touchdown.
While Seattle ultimately lost, Smith must have felt vindication after that performance.
For a brief period, he proved that he’s still worthy of being an NFL quarterback.
He showed tremendous growth by making a sound judgment on every snap.
— Sunday Night Football on NBC (@SNFonNBC) October 14, 2021
With Wilson sidelined for up to eight weeks due to a dislocated finger, the Seahawks will be Smith’s team for a while.
Good things come to those who wait, and Smith can finally resurrect his once-promising career.
From Starter To Sideline Warmer
Smith shared after their Thursday Night Football game against the Rams that being patient was his most significant area of growth.
He knew he could still play but waited for his moment for years.
That mentality is a far cry from the young and talented quarterback who entered the league in 2013.
He thought that playing in the NFL was easy because of the high-scoring offense with the Mountaineers.
His career got fast-tracked when he was named the New York Jets starting quarterback in his rookie season due to Mark Sanchez’s injury.
If Sam Darnold and Geno Smith are any indication of what it's like when you leave the Jets, Zach Wilson is going to be terrifying in 2027.
— Faux John Madden (@FauxJohnMadden) October 8, 2021
Smith ended up starting all 16 games and finished with 3,046 yards and 12 touchdowns.
He added six rushing touchdowns but had 21 interceptions.
Smith’s role as the Jets’ starter ended when he broke his jaw after an altercation with IK Enemkpali.
Ryan Fitzpatrick took over and never looked back.
Over the next four seasons, Smith became the backup to some of the NFL’s elite quarterbacks.
GENO SMITH FINDS DK 🍿
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) October 8, 2021
He crossed to the Giants after his rookie contract expired and was Eli Manning’s deputy.
A year later, he signed with the Los Angeles Chargers to replace Philip Rivers, if needed.
Finally, he came to Seattle in 2019 and did not play a single snap as Wilson’s backup.
He played one game in 2020 and completed four passes for 33 yards.
Smith Turns The Page
The Seahawks will still be Wilson’s team once he recovers.
However, Smith can use his time as a starter to audition for other openings around the league.
Getting a winning record will spark the interest of teams looking to upgrade at quarterback.
.@DangeRussWilson was at practice five days after having surgery on his finger.
He went through drills with his injured hand tucked and is helping Geno Smith prepare to start.
Lead from the front ‼️ pic.twitter.com/1tF4qUF6eH
— B/R Gridiron (@brgridiron) October 14, 2021
He’s on a one-year contract with Seattle and can sign a bigger contract elsewhere after this season.
Wherever he may land, that team will be getting a veteran quarterback who grew his game silently.
His brief stint in Week 5 was loud enough to make teams fall in love with Smith’s second coming.
.@GenoSmith3 showed out tonight despite the circumstances.
— Seattle Seahawks (@Seahawks) October 8, 2021
Imagine what he can do if he gets the complete trust of a franchise.
This time, he won’t let the opportunity slip away.