Evan Smith fine being teammates with guy who stomped on him

AP

When inexplicable things happen, football players will shrug and say it’s “just business”

So for Buccaneers guard Evan Smith, suddenly being teammates with Ndamukong Suh — who famously stomped him on Thanksgiving 2011 — didn’t merit much of a reaction.

“It was 2011,” Smith said, via Martin Fennelly of the Tampa Bay Times. “A long time ago.”

Smith was playing for the Packers then, Suh for the Lions. The stomp resulted in a fine and suspension for Suh.

But upon meeting in the halls last week, they shook hands and moved on. Suh obviously doesn’t care about his perception,

“It was just coincidence, really,” Smith said. “I was just walking out of a meeting; man, and he was just walking right by. It was fine. We’re fine. . . . Here’s the thing about it, man, when you come to work, you get paid to do a job. You don’t get paid to hate people, you get paid to play with them. He’s here to help us win football games. . . .

“People are making too big a deal of this. I know you guys love it. But its football. We’re grown men with families. We’re not out trying to kill guys 24/7. It’s a business, a tough sport. It’s not for the meek people.”

Smith was able to gloss over the incident as “Heat of the battle,” but the reality is Suh has been involved in more than one such battle. But now he’s wearing the same jersey, so Smith isn’t going to make a big deal about it, lest he end up wearing cleat marks again.