Adversity can't slow Ravens' WR Smith
OWINGS MILLS, Md. — On game day, Torrey Smith is a whirlwind of dreadlocks, speed and big-play catches.
None of this provides a hint of the hurdles he had to overcome to become the deep threat the Baltimore Ravens needed to make it to the Super Bowl.
After helping his single mother raise six other children, a chore that included working after school as a teenager, Smith accepted a scholarship to Maryland. He played three seasons, scoring 22 touchdowns — including three on kickoff returns — before throwing his name into the mix for the 2011 NFL Draft.
Smith was selected in the second round by Baltimore, and he quickly displayed the ability to get downfield, although his inexperience resulted in several costly dropped passes.
Early this season, Smith rarely dropped a ball. But tragedy struck less than 24 hours before the Ravens faced New England on Sept. 23: Smith's brother, Tevin Jones, was killed in a motorcycle accident.
Smith left the team to join his family, then returned to catch six passes for 127 yards and two touchdowns to help Baltimore earn a 31-30 victory.
“Incredible,” teammate Jacoby Jones said. “I'm not sure many people could perform under those circumstances, let alone play so well.”
Smith finished the regular season with eight TD catches. In the second round of the playoffs, he twice burned cornerback Champ Bailey for long scores in the Ravens' 38-35 playoff win over Denver. Smith contributed four catches for 69 yards as Baltimore defeated New England, 28-13, to advance to the Super Bowl.
“We talk about the cauldron of competition and the fire that refines us,” Ravens coach John Harbaugh said. “To me, Torrey is the perfect example of how the right kind of person is made of the right kind of stuff.”
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- NFL notebook: Raiders name Sparano interim coach
- NFL notebook: Bills demote Manuel, name Orton starting QB
- NFL notebook: McDonald’s hearing postponed again
- NFL notebook: Video addressed to NFL security chief