Smith is widely considered the second best safety in this year’s class, and should have an immediate impact on the defense in Minnesota.
Take a look at Mr. Smith in action during his career with the Irish:
As you can see, this guy is always around the ball. At 6’2 and 215 lbs, Smith is able to come up and stop the run, but is still athletic enough to move around the zone to stop pass plays. From the looks of all the highlights I’ve seen, Smith is going to fit very well into the Vikings’ Tampa 2, defensive scheme…
In other Harrison Smith news, he apparently was very uneasy going into night one of the draft, because there was so much uncertainty on which round he would go in. According to the report from the Pioneer Press, he was visibly nervous on Thursday night.
“It was almost like a pitcher throwing a no-hitter. No one wanted to talk to him,” his older brother, Garrett, said Friday. “He wanted to be on his own, and no one wanted to bother him. He was starting to get nervous and feeling it.”
Smith got the call from Rick Spielman only one pick before he was taken by the Vikings…
With the Vikings’ trading up to select Smith, it’s obvious they think he can make an immediate impact. Smith was asked about the opportunity to compete for a starting position next season.
“I have to embrace it,” he said. “Who doesn’t want to start? Why would you want to play the game if you don’t have that competitive fire to go out and compete every day? To me, I think it’s an honor for them to think highly of me to spend such a high pick on me. I want to back them up.”
I say given the current status of Minnesota’s secondary, that Smith should be the starter, unless he’s just clearly not ready after the pre-season. The team is trying to re-establish itself with new young stars, they might as well just go with it, and learn to live with the rookie mistakes.
Much more Vikings draft analysis to come.