We’ve been doing this series with players in mind who could shoot into the first round unexpectedly (so far our most likely candidate is DE Jabaal Sheard) . But what about players who everyone thinks a lock for the first round, but falls into the second (Jimmy Clausen/Rey Maluaga are two good recent examples). While Jimmy Smith is super talented and a very good football talent he’s been making all the wrong decisions leading up to the draft. And now are coming reports that teams are starting to take him off their board.
These teams were “so turned off by his character” in Combine interviews that they won’t draft Smith if even he falls to the late rounds. How many teams have taken this approach is unclear, but as a top-15 talent it’s still possible Smith could be drafted on day one or two. In addition to past failed drug tests and arrests, clubs are concerned with Smith’s truthfulness and failure to take “direct responsibility” for his alleged transgressions
The thing that I read that bothered me most about Smith was something I read before the combine that Smith was skipping combine workouts for the two weeks leading up to the draft. This is the Most important job interview of Jimmy Smith’s life and he has (reportedly) something better to do, that would really turn me off I’m going to invest millions of dollars into a player. That’s very unprofessional and could be a bad sign of things to come.
On top of that is of course Smith is off the field transgressions. Having been arrested twice for possession of alcohol as a minor (not that it’s a big deal) as well as a failed drug test. And has admitted as much
Jimmy Smith Mock draft buster prospect who could fall out of the first round (thought it does only take one)…
I don’t like to make decisions of what I would do based on reports of bad interviews, but I’ve hired people before and I understand how important it is to like someone in an interview, if you don’t get a good feel for someone in an interview you can’t trust that they will do a good job working for you despite how talented they may be, so I can understand why teams pass on “character issues”, even if that term gets thrown around way too much (and that’s why I put it in quotes).
What are your thoughts?
Would you draft Smith in the first round, his talent is undeniable and he’s been compared favorably to Nnamdi Asmougha on the field because of his long arms, speed, and ability to move, (Smith says he has better ball skills than Asmougha). How much do these seemingly minor transgressions bother you? Are you willing to invest millions in his talent with these relatively minor transgressions based on what you’ve seen on the field?
Happy St. Patty’s day.
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