Throughout his 16 years in the NFL, Washington quarterback Alex Smith has impacted numerous other players. As a role model, mentor and source of inspiration, the veteran has helped others battle adversity of their own and find success.
Very few, however, have probably felt the impact of Smith like Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes, who was Smith's backup during the 2017-18 NFL season.
Upon hearing that Smith entered Washington's game on Sunday nearly two years removed from a severe leg injury, Mahomes took some time to express just how proud he was of his former teammate.
"It's amazing. It really is amazing for him to get through what he went through and get back on the field... he's a special human being," Mahomes said to the media.
The relationship between Mahomes and Smith has been well-documented. The quarterback himself has been vocal that Smith's tutelage during their one season together in Kansas City was instrumental in helping him reach the level he is at today.
Despite Mahomes coming in to eventually take over Smith's role as the starting quarterback, the veteran made every effort to teach his protege the ways of the NFL and take him under his wing, rather than ice him out due to the nature of the quarterback competition.
Mahomes' father has gone as far as to say that his son "can never repay" Smith for everything he has done for him.
So now, as Mahomes continues to light up the league on a weekly basis, he couldn't be happier to see the man who has given so much to others get an opportunity to once again compete on the football field.