ASK MIKE: Could Sean Smith wind up in the slot?
by: Mike Berardino September 8th, 2010 | 9:11 AM
Four days till kickoff. Can almost taste it now:
Q: What are the issues with Sean Smith? I know he’s gotten beat a few times in the preseason, but so have the other CB’s on the team. It’s got to be other issues. Maybe him being tardy to the Atlanta game was the final straw. He’s not playing with a mean streak. He has to tackle a lot better, and I thought he would because they said he had gain 10 pounds or more of muscle. The knock on Sean coming out of Utah was he can’t tackle and he obviously hasn’t improved in that important area of his game. And now he’s getting torched and showing up late for games. We would’ve ever thought Jason Allen would be the new starter by coach’s decision? Kudos to Jason Allen for his perseverance. Stanoh.
A: Lapses in concentration and technique are admittedly holding Smith back as much as anything. He’s still immensely talented, still deserving of a starting spot and, as Tony Sparano pointed out this week, needs to keep himself ready at all times for his next big opportunity. It’s unlikely that would come as the nickel corner in place of Benny Sapp. That’s a spot where Smith’s physical stature would actually work against him a bit, judging from Sparano’s comments on what it takes to play against slot receivers. But if that’s what it takes to get Smith back on the field and to continue this run of improvement by Jason Allen at the boundary corner, then, by all means, the Dolphins should give it a try. In the practice reps we saw during training camp, I definitely saw Smith line up at slot corner a handful of times, but that was it.