The West Virginia man had an excellent season that was no doubt well-noted by all NFL teams interested in picking up a new quarterback this year, and it led him to the clear standout No. 1 quarterback position by nearly all scouts and mock draft experts.
Yet he did slide away from the No. 1 pick in the process—considered now more to be a general top 10 pick out of this year's NFL draft class. Smith is considered more as a good without being great, solid without being excellent, type of player that usually sees himself taken somewhere high in the first round, but not the top, standout pick that wows everyone around the league.
He's Sam Bradford, not Andrew Luck or Robert Griffin III (via NFL.com)
And yet, heading into the 2013 NFL Combine, Smith has the opportunity to not only redeem himself in the minds of many draft experts, but also work his way back up the boards as a higher draft pick.
With a strong combine, Smith could well see himself back as a potential first overall draft pick this year—simply by confirming that he really is the best quarterback.
After horrendous seasons that saw them without any real direction or leadership under center, several NFL teams will be looking to the new draft class to give them their new franchise quarterback. Teams like Arizona, Buffalo, Kansas City, Oakland—heck, even the New York Jets—will all be looking to the 2013 class to see if there's a guy in there who can lead them out of their current predicament.
They're looking for who the best overall quarterback is in the league, and as we'll see at the combine, Smith is an absolute lock for that claim.
Tyler Wilson doesn't possess great athleticism out of the pocket—something that will show up at the combine— and Matt Barkley isn't even going to participate this year (via Yahoo Sports). But Smith, with his solid accuracy and dynamic athleticism will prove correct the suspicions that many teams have unconfirmed about him.
All because he'll show up and run fast, in a manner of speaking.
Smith showed glimpses of his athleticism last season in college, but never truly showcased just how dynamic of a runner he can be in the league. With the success of Colin Kaepernick and RG3 last year, expect dual-threat to be a phrase touted as a much-wanted commodity in quarterbacks at the moment—something Smith can prove that he has with strong times on the ground.
Expect his 40-yard dash time to be quick; expect his three-cone drill to be prolific. And in doing so, expect Smith to shoot well clear as the draft's top QB.
Teams know that he is a brilliant passer of the ball and a great manager of the game; now they'll see just how explosive he can be when required. Smith will truly be able to showcase the many aspects of his game that he only showed glimpses of last season, and he'll confirm himself as a genuine contender to be the future face of a franchise.
He can throw, he can run and he has vision.
Few struggling teams can afford to pass that up this year, and one of them is bound to pull the trigger on Smith when it comes to the 2013 NFL Draft as a result.
Perhaps even the Kansas City Chiefs.
Can Geno Smith become the first overall pick in the 2013 NFL Draft?
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