Veteran Alex Smith's remarkable return to action in 2020 earned him NFL Comeback Player of the Year honors and just might have been the best story of the season around the league.
But now he has been released by the Washington Football Team, so his inspiring comeback story will have to continue elsewhere.
Could the next chapter take him to Miami?
The Dolphins likely will be in the market for a new veteran quarterback in 2021 with the expected departure of Ryan Fitzpatrick via free agency.
Smith has some of the same characteristics that made Fitzpatrick so appealing to the Dolphins, starting with leadership qualities and the ability to serve as a mentor for Tua Tagovailoa.
Smith, whose comeback from a devastating 2018 knee injury has been well documented, joins a crowded free agent quarterback pool that includes several intriguing possibilities for the Dolphins, such as Tyrod Taylor, Jacoby Brissett, Robert Griffin III and Brian Hoyer.
Like pretty much all of them, finding a team where he could win a starting job likely would have the most appeal for Smith, but the Dolphins situation could serve as a good fall-back option.
We got the lowdown on what Smith could bring to the Dolphins and what his future might hold from SI Washington Football writer Chris Russell:
"Alex Smith was clearly up-and-down in 2020 for his return to the gridiron after 17 surgeries caused by countless complications. As everyone knows, it was a football miracle that he was even able to get on the field again.
"He had some super high moments. A road win in Pittsburgh against the undefeated Steelers, a Thanksgiving win in Dallas as part of a four-game win streak. Also, Smith led Washington in a week 17 division clinching victory at Philadelphia.
"There were too many moments to cover your eyes and hope for the best. From Aaron Donald jumping on his back in a monsoon during his return to the calf/bone bruise injury that cost him more than three key games, including the playoff loss to Tampa.
"The on-field concerns that everyone should have is this: Is Alex's compromised mobility forcing him to take more risks as a passer and therefore increasing his turnover total, which further reduces his effectiveness?
"Ideally, I think Smith is looking for a situation where he has a reasonable chance to be a starter at some point during the year. Possibly because of injury to the starter or ineffectiveness and that could make the Miami Dolphins an ideal candidate for him.
"He's smart, a great teammate and a hard worker and he could pair with Tua Tagovailoa to make a solid tag team."
In addressing the possibility of adding Smith, it's only fair to mention the biggest negative, and that's the fact that Smith will turn 37 in early May.
On the one hand, Fitzpatrick was very good the past two seasons at that age (he turned 37 in November 2019). On the other, that means Smith likely would be a short-term solution.
It surely would be part of the conversation, but it's a conversation that certainly should be had.