Once in a while, you run into a player, that just has that “It factor”. Despite what his stats look like, amazing or not, he has the potential, to be a legit NFL star. When you put on his tape, you see the skillset and tools, of a young man, who could be great one day. Blessed with raw speed, natural strength, and football acumen, to rival a top prospect. In this case, I am talking about Running back, Trey Smith, of the University of Wyoming.
Sitting down with the young prospect, I was immediately impressed with his off the field presence. More so after watching his game tape, you could see why one Scout, referred to Smith, as “Having the potential be a hidden gem, in the draft” when we spoke earlier this week. The son of Jacksonville Jaguars, legend WR Jimmy Smith, it was simple too see that Trey, has had the right background, be mentally prepared for the next level.
One issue I saw maybe being a speed bump, was his early switch to the running back position, from the wide-out, position. Getting started it was the first thing I asked the kid, and he knocked the question down, with the grace of any politician. ” No, the switch from wide receiver to running back, wasn’t as hard as some think. I was blessed, I had someone like Fred Taylor (Jacksonville Jaguars), to watch and learn from as a child, and as I took that step to change positions. He, along with coaches and others really taught me what it took, to change to that spot. he taught me how to work on my football IQ. He taught me how to read defenses, from behind the line of scrimmage. He really showed me, what I should be looking at, and looking for when we are lining up. That has made a world of difference for me, and the change”. Continuing “That is something I have made part of my routine, learning. Constantly trying to get better, my father instilled that in me, he gave me that knowledge, to constantly look to get better on and off the field. Getting my football IQ up, was important to me, to really understand what was happening around me. It was the only way I would get better, and be a player worth playing”.
Trey’s calm demeanor was infectious, when talking to him, something I found funny, when watching the tape. Smith, loves contact, a great blocker, while picking up the blitz, and while running out in front of someone. Bigger than I expected an former WR, to look like, Smith came into the season, weighing 220 Lb.’s, at 6 feet, he is considered a bruiser with speed. “I love it…I really do, I love contact. I don’t mind going in there and making the big block to spring a runner. I really like doing the dirty work, be it on special teams, or on offense, blocking. Playing fullback, lead blocking. I like to hit. Whatever it takes to help my team, you will always be able to say I am a team first kind of player.”
Originally recruited and committed to play at the University of Louisville, Smith, found himself, deep on the depth chart, moving from one spot (WR) to another (Fullback and RB), I asked Smith if he had any gripes with the lack of carries and opportunities? “Definitely not!, as I said I am a team-first guy, I always have been, always will. I make it clear I will do what it takes to get on the field and to help my team. In Louisville, They asked me to play Fullback, and I loved it. I feel like as long as I do my best with every shot I get, it will work itself out. I have always been a depth guy of sorts, I have always been lower on the depth charts, but I make it worth it. I give it all on every snap I play. My father made sure I knew, to always be in the weight room, always study, always watch the film. And be ready, so that’s what I do.” Quickly speaking to another source on the young runners, lack of opportunities?, he replied with a big smile, saying “I personally don’t care, while some will, I see it as a kid with a lot of raw talent, that comes from great stock (Jimmy Smith), and has the right attitude to be a great fit in any locker room. While he may not have played a ton, and he might not be a media star, he has averaged over five yards a carry which is impressive, I don’t care who you are, and he has plenty of tread on the tire. I think if given a real shot he could be a player that has a strong career. Once again, he comes from great stock, and he has that toughness his father has.”
Speaking of his father, I caught up with the former Jaguar, and asked him, if he thought his son had the tools to play at the next level, and what advice he would give to Trey, to prepare for the League? ” Yep! He has the tools to play in the NFL, and as far as advice, I would tell him, to work extremely hard, take his vitamins, repeat his affirmation, and pray.” words to live by.
While you may not have heard of Trey Smith, (Yet) he is worth the look. Blessed with real talent, and the mindset, to be a legit success, he is one player, with the “It factor”, that could help any team NFL team, in the league. Forget stats, just put on the tape, and I promise you will see what I do. A natural athlete, who at times looks like a man amongst boys, and has the personality to be a true leader, in any endeavor.