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Old 03-31-2008, 04:39 AM   #1
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Default Steelers still have high hopes for Smith

Steelers still have high hopes for Smith
By Scott Brown
TRIBUNE-REVIEW
Monday, March 31, 2008



PALM BEACH, Fla. -- He started the year as a reclamation project. By the end of it, cornerback Ike Taylor had re-claimed the starting job he lost in 2006 and turned in a solid season.
Free safety Anthony Smith appears to be in a similar situation.

For all of the promise he had shown up until last December, Smith's 2007 season was, fairly or not, defined by an infamous guarantee he made and the decline of his play that followed.

While Ryan Clark is expected to enter offseason practices as the starting free safety, the Steelers have done anything but write off Smith, as coach Mike Tomlin reiterated Sunday.

"He's been a bright-eyed guy this offseason," Tomlin said. "I know that he can't wait to get out there and show people what he's capable of and help us win at the same time. To be quite honest with you, he's game for the challenge."
Smith didn't prove to be up to the challenge after he predicted the Steelers would beat the Patriots.

He was victimized on two long pass plays that resulted in touchdowns in the Steelers' 34-13 loss to New England, and the second-year pro never seemed to recover from the dose of humility he was force-fed by Tom Brady and Co.

He eventually lost the starting job (to Tyrone Carter) that he had assumed after Clark's season ended because of a prolonged illness.

Steelers defensive backs coach Ray Horton said Smith may have been overwhelmed by all of the coverage his guarantee generated before and after he made it.

"The next week (after the Patriots game), he didn't respond to all of the hype that went on," Horton said. "I think the biggest thing with him is he learned a lot. He grew up, I think, really with the media. He's still a young, talented guy that we have big hopes for."

A handful of other Steelers are trying to come back in a different sense.

Tomlin gave an update on some of the players that are battling back from injuries:

? Willie Parker, who broke his lower right leg in late December, is progressing well and is already doing some running, Tomlin said.

"We're very optimistic, as are our doctors and trainers," Tomlin said of the Pro Bowl running back. "He's getting better every day."

? Hines Ward, who had surgery following the season to repair a partial meniscus tear in his right knee, is also doing well, Tomlin said. The veteran wideout is expected to take part in voluntary workouts at the team's South Side facility today.

? Defensive end Aaron Smith, whose season ended last December because of a torn bicep, has been working out on a regular basis at the Steelers' complex.

"He's getting close to normal," Tomlin said.

? Left tackle Marvel Smith is expected to make a full recovery from the back problems that limited him to 12 games last season and required surgery.

"Marvel is a competitor," Tomlin said. "He's going to do what it takes to get back and be ready to play."
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Old 03-31-2008, 04:43 AM   #2
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Default Re: Steelers still have high hopes for Smith

It's great to hear everyone is recovering from there injuries nicely, and for smith I still think he will be a fine player in the nfl if just given time.
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Old 03-31-2008, 07:40 AM   #3
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Default Re: Steelers still have high hopes for Smith

Hopefully Anthony has matured over the offseason and will be ready to compete hard in TC. I believe this guy has some serious talent and that his biggest obstacle last season was his immaturity. Let's see what ya got Anthony!

Great news on the other guys as I know a lot of us have been wondering how they've been healing and progressing. Hopefully, we can field a healthy team this season and keep 'em healthy!
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Old 03-31-2008, 07:48 AM   #4
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Default Re: Steelers still have high hopes for Smith

It's a shame he had to eat that "guarantee" comment so bad. Especially since it didn't seem to me like a true guarantee type of comment. I expect big things from him this year.
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Old 03-31-2008, 09:44 AM   #5
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Default Re: Steelers still have high hopes for Smith

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Especially since it didn't seem to me like a true guarantee type of comment.
exactly, the Pittsburgh media is to blame here not Smith. He was saying if they play their best, if they play Steeler football they will win. That ahole journalist baited him into saaying guarantee

Whoever that journalist was interviewing Smith is a total tool and should be fired
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Old 03-31-2008, 10:21 AM   #6
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Default Re: Steelers still have high hopes for Smith

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It's a shame he had to eat that "guarantee" comment so bad. Especially since it didn't seem to me like a true guarantee type of comment.
Yep, I didn't see Golden Boy eating his words for practically guaranteeing his cheating fraud of a team would score 42 in the SB, when in reality, they could barely manage 1/3 of that total....
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Old 03-31-2008, 10:21 AM   #7
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Default Re: Steelers still have high hopes for Smith

players are baited by the media constantly, the mature ones don't take the bait.

that said, i still have very high hopes for a. smith.
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Old 03-31-2008, 02:30 PM   #8
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Default Re: Steelers still have high hopes for Smith

so do i.
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Old 03-31-2008, 02:31 PM   #9
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Default Re: Steelers still have high hopes for Smith

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players are baited by the media constantly, the mature ones don't take the bait.
Bingo

First rule: never take the bait from the media and run your mouth about guarantees

Rule two: When you violate the first rule, at the very least, make sure the rest of the league doesn't have to consult the media guide to figure out who you are. In other words, you have to earn the right to make an *ss of yourself in front of the media, and thus, make the rest of your team deal with your comments. See Joey Porter.

Honestly, while I hope Anthony has learned his lesson and recovers to play well, he's only the third most important Smith on the team. IMO, how healthy Aaron and Marvel are next season is much more important to the Steelers' season.
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Old 03-31-2008, 11:43 PM   #10
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Default Re: Steelers still have high hopes for Smith

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Originally Posted by lamberts-lost-tooth View Post
... He was victimized on two long pass plays that resulted in touchdowns in the Steelers' 34-13 loss to New England, and the second-year pro never seemed to recover from the dose of humility he was force-fed by Tom Brady and Co...
F*CK BRADY & THE CHEATRIOTS!

Anthony will be back!
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