Nick Foles is once again a starting NFL quarterback.
Smith left the Week 8 win over the Indianapolis Colts after taking several hits to the head. The team reiterated Wednesday it doesn’t believe Smith suffered a concussion and that he’s symptom-free, per Andy Reid.
Smith was hit while sliding on opening possession Sunday and his head bounced off the turf — there was no flag on the play. He cleared concussion protocol and returned to the game in the second quarter. In the third quarter, Smith’s head bounced off the ground again. This time he left the game for good.
On Monday he was cleared, and the team stated Smith didn’t suffer a concussion.
Despite the positivity about Smith’s status, he’s still going through “return to play protocol,” per Reid, and was already ruled out of Sunday’s contest. Tyler Bray will back up Foles.
Smith, who has suffered two concussions in the past, was asked Wednesday if he felt like he suffered a concussion: “Nope,” he responded bluntly, per the team’s official website.
With Smith sitting, Foles will make his first start of the season. Foles started six games under Reid as a rookie in 2012.
The 27-year-old quarterback performed well in relief last week, completing 16 of 22 passes for 223 yards and two touchdowns, for a 135.2 passer rating. With Foles under center, the Chiefs could work the deep ball more than it did with Smith.
Passing, 21+ Air Yards This Season
Smith: 5 of 17; 158 yards; 9.3 Y/A; 1-0 TD-INT; 85.4 passer rating
Foles: 3 of 4; 116 yards; 29.0 Y/A; 1-0 TD-INT; 156.3 passer rating
Last season Foles had 69.0 passer rating with Rams, second worst in the NFL. Sunday we’ll see if Reid’s magic continues to work on Foles or if last week’s performance was an aberrative event.