Torrey Smith, WR, University of Maryland
The 2010 NFL season has been expired for two weeks (weep weep) and while the 2011 season is majorly in flux, the NFL draft will go on between April 28th-30th at Radio City Music Hall. Like last year, I’ll be bringing you a special Rookie Roundup series, with intimate profiles featuring several of the names you’ll hear called in late April. Kicking off this year’s Rookie Roundup is Maryland’s Torrey Smith. And for this special Rookie Roundup kickoff I was joined by The College Football Girl, who’s identity remains a mystery.
Career Stats: 152 receptions, 2218 yards, 19 touchdowns
Projection: Late 1st round/Early 2nd round
Torrey Smith Q & A
The College Football Girl: How do you compare the transition from being in school to graduating, where now instead of going to class, your sole purpose is to work out and prepare for the combine?
Torrey Smith: It’s definitely a little different. I mean going to school and playing ball kind of goes hand in hand. This is the first time I’ve been able to focus on one thing. I’m glad I accomplished my goal of graduating and focused on that and it made football a lot easier not having to take classes or anything.
Melissa Jacobs: Take us through a typical Torrey Smith workout
TS: I’m training down in Miami with Bommerito along with a bunch of top players in the country. He has a great program. At Bommerito we focus on strength and agility, nothing out of the norm such as yoga.
The CFB Girl: Your childhood hardships have been well-documented and I’m sure you’ve been asked every possible question about growing up and how it shaped you as the person you are today. But how did it affect you on the field?
TS: I think it made me stronger mentally. I think it helped me to understand the emotions of the game without turning your back on everyone. You know, I definitely think having struggled and understanding how to stick together as a family has definitely helped me out as a player. That’s the experience you get playing on a football team – that family type atmosphere.
MJ: Virginia coach Al Groh was quoted in 2009 as saying if he knew how good you were in high school you would have been playing for them. How much of a “proving everyone wrong” element is there to your game?
TS: I feel like it’s a lot more so now than in high school. Everyone knew I could play ball in high school. I just broke my leg and it was bad timing. That’s why I fell off. I was actually supposed to go to UVA via scholarship but I broke it two days before I left, otherwise I would have gone there. But I feel like everything happens for a reason. I ended up a Terrapin, I’m proud of it and ready to prove people wrong at this level, especially because I know people at this level have a lot of opinions based on your strengths and weaknesses, so I need to show everyone I can play with the best of them.
MJ: Let’s move on to the all-important scouting reports. Some of the positives from “draft experts:” Blazing speed, great vertical game, good vision. And some of the negatives: too many body catches, needs to improve as blocker. Forget these guys. The College Football Girl and I are NFL GMs. Tell us in 30 seconds why we should draft you.
TS: I feel like I can contribute in many different ways. I’m not limited to anything. As good as I am now, I’ll get better. I’ll work on special teams. As a leader in the locker room, I’ll come in and learn to play my role and help the team. And do whatever I can to help the team contend for a Super Bowl.
The CFB Girl: On paper—you’re better than Darrius Heyward-Bey in every category—and he was drafted 7th overall. How does this help you in the eyes of the NFL scouts?
TS: I don’t think it helps me at all. We’re two completely different people. People want to compare me and Darrius, two great Maryland products, and I feel like telling everyone ‘I’m the little brother’ because people are always going to compare us and I always have to get the short end of the stick because he’s been there first. But I’m ready to do my own thing and hope to separate myself. And Darrius can do his own thing as well.
The CFB Girl: What separates you from the other receivers in the draft?
TS: I’m not limited. Like I said, I can contribute on special teams. Obviously I’m fast, and people who saw me play all year saw me with a high ankle sprain. Ii didn’t get better until I started the offseason and training for my NFL career but I felt 100% two weeks in. I really feel like playing through injury shows toughness. It kind of gives me confidence with accelerating and cuts and generally being ready to go in the pros.
MJ: We’re now going to take you through our own combine. Let’s start with some very quick questions and answers to get to know you better.
MJ: Best player to ever come out of Maryland
TS: Vernon Davis
MJ: Kim Kardashian, Rihanna, Megan Fox, or Meagan Good
MJ: Coolest celeb or athlete you’ve met:
TS: Actually I went to Chad Ochocinco’s surprise party here in Miami so I was relaxin’ with him and T.O., which was cool
MJ: Favorite restaurant chain
MJ: Best follow on Twitter:
MJ: First thing you’re buying for yourself after the draft
TS: Uh, nothing if there’s a lockout.
MJ: Favorite NFL Team:
TS: I don’t have one.
MJ: You will soon enough!
The CFB Girl: Moving on to word association: I’ll say one or two words or a name and you just say the first thing that pops into your mind
The CFB Girl: NFL Combine
The CFB Girl: Cee Loo Green
The CFB Girl: Ralph Friedgen
The CFB Girl: Drew Rosenhaus:
TS: (pauses) The best at what he does
The CFB Girl: Ryan Mallett
TS: Strongest arm and biggest QB ever
The CFB Girl: AJ Green
TS: Wide receiver in the draft
The CFB Girl: Mel Kiper Jr.
TS: ESPN analyst
The CFB Girl: Fishing
TS: My hobby
The CFB Girl: Torrey Smith
TS: A great person.