Birthday: September 15, 1979
Strengths: Trent Smith was the most productive receiving tight end in college football last year, catching 61 passes in Oklahoma’s spread offense. With his combination of height and quickness, Smith is able to separate from most defenders. He is particularly effective against linebackers, who he can typically outreach and outrun. Smith has excellent hands and rarely misses a catchable ball. He has the concentration and toughness to make catches in traffic and take the punishment when he does.
The Sooner coaching staff considers Smith one of the leaders of their offense. It seems appropriate that this important member of the Oklahoma aerial assault is an aviation major who earned his pilot’s license three years ago.
Areas for Concern: Smith lacks the bulk and strength to be a physical blocker and may never be able to pack enough beef on his lanky frame to get into that category. He also lacks experience as a blocker, having played in a spread offense that does not utilize many power running plays. Smith may get an opportunity as a senior to do more run blocking due to the new Sooner offensive coordinator’s stated commitment to improving the ground attack. Also Smith’s impressive statistics may be inflated to a degree by the pass-happy scheme in which he plays.
How Would He Look in Steel Blue? Smith’s weakness as a blocker probably prevents him from being the type of tight end that the Texans would like on a full-time basis. He could be an effective role player for the Texans, serving as an H-back or receiving specialist who plays mainly on passing downs. Pete Mitchell was very effective in that job for Chris Palmer during Palmer’s stint as Jacksonville’s offensive coordinator.
(profile written by Warren DeLuca
Doug Ziegler’s 2001 Stats G CTH YDS AVG TD 12 61 564 9.2 6
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