Ranking every Kansas City Chiefs starting quarterback since 1990

Super Bowl LVII - Kansas City Chiefs v Philadelphia Eagles
Super Bowl LVII - Kansas City Chiefs v Philadelphia Eagles / Cooper Neill/GettyImages
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2. Alex Smith (2013-2017)

Let’s make one thing clear: In the aftermath of the Alex Smith trade to Washington (a very savvy move by a new GM in Brett Veach, by the way), there should have been much more pomp and circumstance around the five seasons he spent as the Chiefs starting quarterback. Instead, any appreciation for Smith was quickly drowned out by the overwhelming popularity and deafening emergence of the game’s best QB (see above).

Here’s what normally happens: a very good or even great quarterback retires, is traded, or moves on in some way, and there’s a solid period of time in which fans contemplate his contributions while the franchise somehow celebrates him. How many years after Joe Montana’s short stint did we all spend writing love letters to the guy, even years and decades later? A very good quarterback is hard to find, and they’re remembered fondly, like a camp crush who will forever have some of your heart.

Smith deserved such a stretch because he pulled the Chiefs out of one. One season after the Belcher disaster and the single worst season in franchise history, Smith had Kansas City back in the playoffs with the sort of play under center not seen since Montana. He won 50 of 76 starts, threw 102 touchdowns, and rushed for 10 more (while only throwing 33 picks). He also had the Chiefs positioned for their current run of greatness by mastering the AFC West and bringing stability and success to Arrowhead once again.