Geno Smith addresses criticism

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Jets quarterback Geno Smith doesn’t currently have an agent to push to the media a better narrative than the one that has emerged since the draft began.

So Smith is doing it himself.

Smith addressed some recent criticisms during a Monday interview with Jim Corbett of USA Today.  And while the 39th pick in the draft declared that “I don’t worry about what people say — my skin is pretty thick,” Smith disputed a recent report from Jason Cole of Yahoo! Sports that Smith focused excessively on his smartphone during team visits.

“That’s not true,” Smith said. “I got strong remarks from all the teams I visited with. . . .  I couldn’t care less what’s coming out in the media because I know what’s true.”

It’s a delicate balance.  On one hand, he says he doesn’t care.  On the other hand, he cares enough to dispute it.

Smith again explained that he didn’t fire his former agents in the days after the draft because he slid out of the first round.

“Parts of the draft experience were tough, but not all of it,” Smith said.  “With that entire process, you can see where some things went wrong. . . .  Choosing to leave those guys was the best decision for me at the time.  That’s what I went with.  I think I’m pretty good with my decision making.  So I trust myself.”

The problem is that, regardless of the reasons, the timing suggests that Smith blamed the agents for his eventual draft position.  It arguably would have been better to lay low until late June before making the change, instead of doing it when the draft experience was fresh in everyone’s mind.

Smith also took issue, 11 days after the fact, with a report from ESPN’s Suzy Kolber that the former West Virginia quarterback planned to leave New York after the first night of the draft.

“Coming back on Day 2 was never not an option for me,” Smith said.  “My goal was to go up on that stage and shake Mr. Goodell’s hand.  And that’s what we did.”

It’s too late to set that part of the record straight.  The perception that Smith didn’t handle the situation properly hardened hours before he shook Goodell’s hand.  The first order of business for his new agent should be to accept the existing perception and work to change it not in one fell swoop but over a period of months.

The best way to do that will be for Smith to play well and, when things inevitably don’t go well, to handle it calmly.

For more on Smith and other Jets-related issues, here’s Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News from Monday’s PFT Live.

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77 responses to “Geno Smith addresses criticism

  1. He just needs to stop talking, focus on the game, and then play. He’s dug himself a hole and he’s not going to get out of it any other way right now except for on the field.

  2. I hate the Jets as much as the next guy…but saying things will “inevitably” go poorly for Geno isn’t fair to the kid!

  3. “Coming back on Day 2 was never not an option for me,” Smith said. “My goal was to go up on that stage and shake Mr. Goodell’s hand. And that’s what we did.”

    Didnt he say, in the interview on stage after he was drafted, that…like it was tough, but he was advised to come back (Meaning he wasnt going to, but later changed his mind because of someone else)? I’m not sure of when he said it, but i know he said something to that effect.

    So he’s not only thin skinned, he’s a liar.

  4. The spotlight usually magnifies someone’s personality. Geno Smith is a d-bag of epic proportions. Also, he was the 10th or 11th best QB in a horrible drafts for QBs. Enjoy your limited notoriety because it isn’t going to last.

  5. All you can do is take a man at his word, and NEVER fully trust the media. Although there are multiple stories that occur during the draft process, the Geno Smith slide was the hottest button topic. Therefore, I wouldn’t put it past a network to fabricate stories that he planned or leaving, or that he had better representation of himself on his visits. Either can be true or false. In the meantime, I hope you prosper and prove your naysayers wrong.

  6. I think it would have been a mistake to wait. Geno showed good poise and leadership to step up and right something that he felt was a wrong and there’s no better time to do that than as soon as you figure out you’ve made a mistake. His agents did a bad job and he stood up for himself despite what anybody might think of the story. There’s a lot of assumptions I would have to make to qualify the situation further, but on face value I would say that Smith did the right thing and hopefully he can gauge better this time who is the right team to partner with.

  7. Any highly drafted QB during this stretch of Jets folklore have an uphill battle in front of them to say the least.

    To take over ANY struggling franchise with an entire fan base counting on you as a kid in your early 20’s can be heavy stuff.

    To take over with a cloud of perceived mental softness following you in NY of all places really stacks the deck against you.

    Good luck kid.

  8. “I don’t worry about what people say — my skin is pretty thick,”


    Then why is he responding to every little criticism about him? Kolber didn’t have to report that he wasn’t coming back; It was all in his body language.

    It’s clear that he is arrogant and feels entitled. He went to the right team. He really created this mess for himself, mostly by the way he handled the draft situation.

  9. Far be it for a 24 yr old to not handle things in the best possible way. The criticism is getting old already. Let the kid enjoy his accomplishments and if he sucks as a player then let that be fodder for the pundits. All the hearsay/he said/he did nonsense is petty at this point.

  10. Hasn’t played one snap and is already having to defend his play…

    In New York, where the media kills you.

    This isn’t going to end well Jets fans.

  11. In other news, 31 other 2nd round picks are keeping their mouths shut hoping to stay under the radar and make 31 other teams wish they’d taken them. And they’re doing it with hard work and preparation, and shutting up. At least T.O. kept his mouth shut until making a name for himself.

  12. Dude has set himself up for a hard life. NY media eating him up while playing on a poorly ran franchise. It all sounds good until you have a butt fumble!

  13. Give the man a chance to prove himself on the field. He may fall flat on his face, but I’m sick and tired of all the negativity. Some folks need to get a life instead of spouting armchair psychoanalysis about a football player for goodness sakes.

  14. “I got strong remarks from all the teams I visited with. . . . I couldn’t care less what’s coming out in the media because I know what’s true.”

    Impressive. You managed to say “I” four times in two statements.

  15. It would be better for Geno Smith to say nothing right now. He obviously has a high opinion of himself, and nothing has started yet. Do something first, and then maybe people will listen. Until then “shut up” because the only people who care what you have to say are the Jets, and they are a joke.

  16. “That’s what I went with. I think I’m pretty good with my decision making. So I trust myself.”

    I, I, I’m, my, I, myself.

  17. People will see eventually that Geno is a good kid, this crap his agents are trying to pull is just that, crap. Geno wasn’t a headache at WVU & he won’t be in the NFL. Besides, the only people that truly need to like him is his teammates, coaches & the Jets organization.

  18. I am sure I am in the minority, but I feel bad for this kid. I couldn’t imagine being under this kind of scrutiny when I was his age. I know what people say “It comes with the territory.” But should it? No. It really takes a special kind of person to deal with all of this crap.

    Which really leads me to my point, if Geno truly can’t deal with adversity like people say, he’s doing a hell of a job thus far.

  19. I think this kid is going to suck in the NFL but I can tell in his eyes that the scrutiny is getting to him and that makes me want to root for him. He’s on the Jets though.

  20. Geno’s single biggest weakness (on the field) is his tendency to wait for a receiver to get open, then make the throw. With the receivers he had against collegiate secondaries, he could get away with it.

    And it’s something that is coachable and can improve…but will it with those coaches on that team?

    Being drafted by the Jets may well have been the kiss of death for his career.

  21. “Commander – get some crews topside and control the blaze, keep pouring water on it and keep the fire away from the ammo storage lockers. Lieutenant, I want you down below in engineering working with the chief to restart the boilers – we need to start making headway. I WANT DAMAGE CONTROL ON THIS SHIP!!!”

    *Captain Smith sits back down in the captains chair and takes a sip of coffee; his hand that holds the mug, is shaking slightly*

  22. I find it remarkable just how willing people are to take what they hear through the media as pure fact. If you think you actually know who Geno Smith is, simply based upon the recent OPINIONS of a select few individuals…than give your ignorant self a pat on the back.

    I recommend reserving your judgement for those whom you actually have a legitimate interaction with…and that will happen to display a quality of character in yourself.

  23. NY was the worst place for a guy as sensitive as he is. The NY media will tear him apart and we will again see him sitting down with his hands in his face and trying to force a trade out of NY. He will have a new coaching staff in 2014, which will be the beginning of the end of his career. Actually the beginning began when he was drafted by NY.

  24. Geno said “I couldn’t care less”. Just for his grammatical correctness on that one phrase that millions get wrong, I commend him.

  25. Geno should hire Teo’s PR team. They sure spun his lies into a story so that many media members were catfished into believing that he actually was this simple naive person who fell for an evil hoax. His PR team could make Geno into a heroic kid who pulled a family and 10 puppies out of a burning car.

  26. I think Jason Cole meant to say “He doesn’t have the drive needed for football. He’s not like Albert Haynesworth, who stomped a guys face and showed me he’s the toughest player around. Has anyone seen a ham sandwich?”

  27. “My goal was to go up on that stage and shake Mr. Goodell’s hand. And that’s what we did.”

    Well he’s got the WE part down. That still sounds like agent speak to me.

  28. You guys need to cut this kid some slack.
    Why would you assume the unmade GM’s are telling the truth and he’s not?
    At least he’s man enough to speak out for himself.
    GM’s that speak anonymously are gutless, and the media outlets that print their quotes are just as bad.

  29. while it is important to have standards that we hold athletes to, it seems here we are running up to a new born andsizing him up to fit as the new pinata. The good news is that I don’t think he’s interested in part, and his work ethic and huge talent should get him far. every coach who had him, ever teammate, all of them go out of their way to support him. in the end, if that continues, he will be more then fine.

  30. The media , the media, the media!! These guys make up stories when there is no story!

    Just because he doesn’t care about the media doesn’t mean he shouldn’t dispute fallacies, right!

    He answered the questions about day 2 and his agent but the MEDIA refuses to hear what the young man says. Anyways, who cares except the media! The perception is driven soley from media.

    This time it’s not the attention seeking Jets organization, it’s not the fans, it ALL the media driving this story to sell newspapers, internet clicks, and sensationalism!

    The media has helped ruin Sanchez (althought butt-fumbles mostly did him), Tebow, and now they are trying their best ruin a 22 year old rookie. If you remember, they also tried to ruin Eli.

  31. I didn’t hear the excuse Geno gave, because I was talking on my cell phone. What did he say? Oh wait, just got a text, gotta go, something more important than him just came up.

  32. Wow what is wrong with some of you. The guy has Ben blasted every which way for three weeks now what do you want him to o or say. Your the same guy who said see he only thinks of himself by not answering any questions. The guy never said a peep in college, signed autos, hit every practice, passed every class, played every own. I hear all of shouting its in the tape I don’t need the combine. Well his tape shows a decent kid, showed up to class, had zero issues with teammates and coaches, and no trouble outside the program. The tape says this witch hunt is a disgrace. You can’t do or say anything anymore. We want robots. Except when its your kid then every excuse in the book is used.

  33. Manish Mehta IS the anonymous Jet.NONE of these so called ‘anonymous’ things players or agents say happened until he arrived.Win the Superbowl Jets-then run this so called ‘reporter’ out of town.

  34. It is entirely reasonable to claim not to care about what others say about you AS LONG AS IT IS FACTUAL. If someone’s blatantly lying about your conduct or behavior, then you should correct the record even if you’ve claimed to have a thick skin and not to be bothered by what people say.

  35. Skillsets aside, I have a feeling this kid is going to end up being Vince Young 2.0. Loses it after stinking it up in NY and getting booed by his team’s own fans, becomes a complete headcase, ends up broke and struggling to find a team in a few years.

  36. If Geno, as a few others mentioned was drafted by another team, this is a non-story.
    Actually what did he do?
    Domestic abuse?
    Made the NFL crime blotter?

    Go worry about the Steelers while you hum “The Way We Were”.

  37. To paraphrase: an athlete who represents himself has a fool for a client…

  38. This is some major schadenfreude watching this marriage of Geno and the Jets…

    I hope it lasts…

  39. He’s a 22yr old kid with no guidance from agents or experienced people to teach him how to handle this kind of enviorment, give the kid a break!

  40. Of course he cares enough to dispute it. It’s a big stain on his image.

    This story is reeking with #loljets bias. When the Nawrocki report first came out, there were accusations of racism, testaments to his work ethic, what a great teammate and player and hard worker he was.

    The minute he got drafted by the Jets, a substantial majority of the media ignored that, and began believing every accusation as if it were from God’s lips.

  41. Is he the new Tebow? Who cares about a 2nd round qb who has not even thrown a pass. It must be a slow day in the NFL to be covering Geno Smith. What’s up with Scott Tolzine? Exactly…The north east teams get too much coverage.

  42. The kid is a lier. He DID say he wasn’t coming back after the first day of the draft. And he’s acting just the way the media said.

    He has “bust” written all over him. Couldn’t happen to a better team. The Jets are all ready locking up the first pick in next year’s draft.

  43. all you morons that feed into every stupid made up story the media puts out there is the reason they still do it 90% of the stories on this site are what ifs and maybes made up by hack “reporters” that never even talk to the parties they report on. if this kid was drafted by the Vikings you wouldnt hear any of this just too bad the media tries so hard to drum up stories that they throw stupid stuff out there and see what you sheep jump on then they will pump out story after non story about the same subject. please do yourselves a favor and focus on your own teams. I dont ever visit any other teams stories and it means you people really need a life – and for the circus thing made up by the media – the same idiots that camped out at Jets camp to report on a backup qb all last training camp..think about it before putting your fingers on the keyboard and stop being led around by your nose

  44. I have only seen this kid play once on TV, ok but not the best decision maker under pressure at times. Watching him walk onstage during the announcement he had a rather arrogant swagger, and like most of the posts state, he is a little high on himself. Only time will tell if he can make it in NY.

  45. Who cares, I’m a Jets fan. Geno can do things that Sanchez can not do. Geno is quicker the Sanchez. He move better than Sanjazz. Do you need to a saint, to be a quarterback? The Saints do have a very good quarterback. The media thinks he suppose to have a holo around his head. Walk and be thou perfect.


  46. Of course he disputes it, the media is constantly making stuff up and taking “sources” to create a story Manish Mehta style, I’m sure most sources are giant front office ppl. The same ones creaming over a Syracuse QB they got in round 4 (while they had about a billion holes to fill), pretty comical though.

  47. Smith..listen to this reporter…don’t speak to the media about it anymore. They are on a witch hunt smear campaign. Be the bigger person and just concentrate on your play. No more ammo for media.

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