Michael Smith to Buccaneers: Scouting Report and Analysis

Danny PaskasSenior Analyst IApril 28, 2012

Utah State running back Michael Smith is a change of pace back similar to New Orleans Saints RB Darren Sproles. He is, however, a bit bigger, measuring 5'9'' and 205 lbs.

Smith played sparingly at Utah State due to injury and because he was not the team's full-time starter. He was still productive.

Last year Smith ran for 870 yards, averaging 7.6 yards per carry. He also had 16 receptions for 181 yards and two touchdowns.



Smith ran a 4.3 40 at his pro day. That time ranks among the fastest running backs in this year's draft. He was productive in limited playing time at Utah State and does not have a lot of wear on his legs.



He's undersized and injury prone. In 2010 he had a foot injury and in 2011 he suffered a groin injury.


Experts' Take

NFL.com listed Smith as one of their draft gems writing:

Smith possesses exceptional burst and exploded in December's Famous Idaho Potato Bowl, with 157 yards on 12 carries, two for scores.


Rookie Impact

If healthy, Smith can make an immediate impact in a team's kick-return game. At Utah State, he averaged 21.8 yards per return.


Pick Analysis

Smith profiles like a bigger, more injury-prone version of Darren Sproles, which means his selection in the seventh round makes sense. He'll have good upside if he can stay on the field, but probably won't be more than a backup or special teamer for his first few years with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.