It sounds less and less likely by the day that Alex Smith will play Saturday against the Buccaneers. The Washington Football Team listed him as questionable Thursday, and he remains questionable Friday night.
Ian Rapoport of NFL Media reports Smith’s injured right calf still is sore and “hasn’t loosened up.” It comes down to how Smith feels pregame Saturday night.
Regardless, it’s clear Smith is not 100 percent and won’t be 100 percent by kickoff.
Washington wants to give Smith, who is 5-0 in his last five starts and has seven career playoff starts, every opportunity to play. But Taylor Heinicke, who took most of the first-team reps this week, is 100 percent. So what percent Smith is better than a 100 percent Heinicke?
It sounds like a lose-lose for Washington in its first playoff game since 2015.
Smith started a win-or-go-home Week 17 game, but he threw two interceptions and apparently came out of the game worse for wear. Heinicke did not join the team until December and has one NFL start, which came in 2018 for Carolina.
There appears a real chance Heinicke’s second career start comes in his first playoff game.