I’ve always been a fan of Lions running back Kevin Smith, if only because he was the guy on the 0-16 Lions that seemed to care the most, to be most bothered by the losing.
He looked like the rare Matt Millen draft pick that would stick.
One regime change and a devastating knee injury later, the Detroit Free Press writes that Smith may not even make the Lions roster this year.
“I don’t know,” coach Jim Schwartz said when asked about Smith’s status Tuesday. “I’ll cross that bridge
when we get there. I don’t know that there’s very many people that have
100% earned a spot.”
Smith offers no special teams value, and he’s been unable to cut loose after tearing his ACL last year. He’s well-liked and carries out his assignments, but Schwartz hasn’t seen a lot of confidence.
“Kevin’s a very, very smart football player, and he’s going to do the
right thing,” Schwartz said. “He’s got a lot of trust from those things.
He just needs — and it’s not so much earning our trust — he just needs to get his own trust with his knee and everything else.
Smith wasn’t originally expected to be ready for Week One, but he wound up practicing on day one of training camp. That’s one of the risks and cruel realities of being “ahead of schedule” in your rehab.
The Lions have to decide whether Smith, not truly back yet, is worth waiting for.