ad-fullscreen

Raiders CB Sean Smith puts teammates first amid struggles

Updated October 19, 2017 - 7:51 am

ALAMEDA, Calif. — Sean Smith, of course, would like to play more.

“Who wouldn’t want to?” he said this week.

That honest, harmless acknowledgement is about as deep as the Raiders cornerback dives into his ongoing playing-time situation. He was in uniform but did not enter Sunday’s game against the Los Angeles Chargers. Three weeks earlier, he saw three snaps against the Washington Redksins.

He could complain publicly.

He could pout privately.

“I’m not a selfish player,” Smith said. “I’m not just thinking about myself. I’m trying to win. These are my brothers out there.”

Smith is not expected to see much, if any, of the field Thursday evening against his former team, the Kansas City Chiefs. That hasn’t impeded his desire to make a positive impact. The 30-year-old largely has garnered headlines for a four-year, $38 million contract, coverage lapses or the occasional benching since his 2016 arrival. None of that gives Smith credit for an area in which teammates and coaches say he has thrived.

Amid the negative, he has managed to remain a positive presence.

“That’s an A-plus,” said safety Reggie Nelson, a team captain. “He’s handling it right. He’s not a distraction at all. He’s here for everybody on the team. That’s what I expect from him. That’s what everyone expects from him. Nobody is shying away from it. Everyone knows the situation. … Some guys don’t handle that situation well. I think he’s doing a great job of being there for us. He did a great job Sunday, even though he didn’t get a chance to play.

“I asked him a lot of questions on the sideline because I know he knows concepts, and he knows football. … You can only control what you can control, and that’s what he’s doing. He’s controlling himself, his attitude, how he’s going about his job. He’s preparing right now for the Kansas City Chiefs like he’s starting. That says a lot about the man and his character. I love him for that.”

Performance has dictated a diminished role for Smith.

The situation is not unique to him. It happens.

It happened to Nelson, a 2007 first-round pick of the Jacksonville Jaguars. They traded him to the Cincinnati Bengals before the 2010 season. It happened to Raiders cornerback David Amerson early in his career. The Redskins drafted him in the 2013 second round. He was released during the first month of the 2015 campaign.

Amerson said Smith is handling it “better than I did,” able to keep steady and maintain his fun personality.

“Cancel out football: What guy on the team would I just want to hang out with?” Amerson said. “It’d be Sean. He’s a good dude. Going back to football, stuff happens. It’s unfortunate. But he’s the best kind of teammate you’d want.

“It ain’t like he’s been around here like, ‘I’m not going to do this’ or ‘I’m not going to do that’ or ‘I should be doing this.’ Obviously, it happened, but it’s like nothing happened. You’ve got to respect him for that.”

Raiders cornerbacks coach Rod Woodson echoed Smith’s teammates.

Woodson called him a “bright, upbeat guy we grew to like and love over the last year and a half.”

“Things haven’t worked out the way he wanted it to work out, the way we wanted it to work out,” Woodson said. “Those things happen in life. They happen in football. But I know one thing: Somewhere along the line this year — it’s a long year — he’s going to play again. And when he plays again, he has to make the plays that come his way. … He has been a great pro, and that is being a good leader.”

“I love all my guys,” Smith said. “That’s why I’m here. I’m here to support. I’m trying to help my team win in any way possible. Whatever they need me to do, I do. I’m definitely not a ‘me’ guy.”

Contact reporter Michael Gehlken at mgehlken@reviewjournal.com. Follow @GehlkenNFL on Twitter.

section-ads_high_impact_4
Raiders Videos
A Mexico City Uber driver on how his hometown was affected by the Nov. 19 earthquake
Miguel Angel Martinez Ayala, an Uber driver in Mexico City, discusses the daily suffering he sees when driving around the city from those affected most by the earthquake that struck his hometown on Nov. 19.
Can a NFL game provide relief for Mexico City's earthquake victims?
The Review-Journal's Ed Graney and Gilbert Manzano visited the school where 26 people died when a massive earthquake hit Mexico City and spoke with those who've lost their homes and are still trying to cope with the aftermath just days before the two month anniversary of the event.
Vegas Nation Red Zone: Raiders have tall task in the Patriots
Bryan Salmond and Gilbert Manzano break down the major components of the Raiders matchup with the New England Patriots in Mexico City.
Vegas Nation: Raiders preparing for game at high elevation
Bryan Salmond and Michael Gehlken discuss the Raiders upcoming road trip to Mexico City, including Donald Penn's status and how the Raiders are preparing for the high elevation in Mexico.
Vegas Nation: Carr Misses Groundbreaking Ceremony
Review-Journal Vegas Nation host Bryan Salmond and reporter Michael Gehlken talk about how the Raiders are preparing to face off against the Patriots and Derek Carr missing the Groundbreaking ceremony for the new stadium in Las Vegas.
Raiders launch work on stadium in Las Vegas
The Raiders held a groundbreaking event at the planned Las Vegas stadium site at Interstate 15 and Russell Road. The event included a tribute to the 58 people who died in the Oct. 1 mass shooting. “For the Raiders to be successful and ultimately win, it takes teamwork,” Raiders owner Mark Davis said NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell and Gov. Brian Sandoval were the top dignitaries on hand. “Only in Vegas can you turn a groundbreaking ceremony into a show,” Goodell said “Well … now it’s real, right?” Sandoval said. “This is one of the most transformative moments in the history of Las Vegas.”
How the Raiders plan to balance their fan base in Oakland and Las Vegas
At the Oakland Raiders groundbreaking ceremony in Las Vegas the team president and owner discussed how they will balance their fan base until they move and how they're planning to deal with any issues they could encounter with the stadium construction.
Raiders remember Las Vegas shooting victims at groundbreaking
During the Oakland Raiders groundbreaking ceremony in Las Vegas, Raiders owner Mark Davis spoke about how important it was to pay tribute to Las Vegas shooting victims at the event.
Vegas Nation: Raiders Stadium Groundbreaking
Gilbert Manzano, Rick Velotta and Ed Graney recap the ceremony for the Raiders Stadium groundbreaking. There’s still plenty of legal work to be done to make the team’s relocation to Las Vegas a reality, but Monday was all about owner Mark Davis’ desire to turn the Silver State into the Silver and Black State. The Raiders moved the chains of public perception Monday with a dazzling groundbreaking event attended by about 600 invited guests at the planned Las Vegas stadium site at Interstate 15 and Russell Road. The historic ceremonial event after sunset, which included a tribute to the 58 people who died in the 1 October mass shooting, was the team’s most visual display of committing to building a $1.9 billion, 65,000-seat domed football stadium and bringing the NFL to Southern Nevada.
Raiders Stadium Groundbreaking
There’s still plenty of legal work to be done to make the team’s relocation to Las Vegas a reality, but Monday was all about owner Mark Davis’ desire to turn the Silver State into the Silver and Black State. The Raiders moved the chains of public perception Monday with a dazzling groundbreaking event attended by about 600 invited guests at the planned Las Vegas stadium site at Interstate 15 and Russell Road. The historic ceremonial event after sunset, which included a tribute to the 58 people who died in the 1 October mass shooting, was the team’s most visual display of committing to building a $1.9 billion, 65,000-seat domed football stadium and bringing the NFL to Southern Nevada.
Raiders break ground on Las Vegas stadium site
The Raiders hosted a ground breaking ceremony at the Las Vegas stadium site near the Strip. Elaine Wilson/Las Vegas Review-Journal
Vegas Nation: Raiders Begin Four Day Break
Review-Journal Vegas Nation host Bryan Salmond and reporter Michael Gehlken discuss the Raiders’ four-day break from practice as they head into their bye week.
Las Vegas seen as NFL draft site by 2019, Super Bowl in 2024-25
Las Vegas could host the National Football draft selection event as soon as 2019 and a Super Bowl by 2024 or 2025, the president of the Oakland Raiders told the Las Vegas Stadium Authority on Thursday. Marc Badain also told board members that he and Stadium Authority Chairman Steve Hill would be flying to Houston on Tuesday for the second round of bidding for the planned 65,000-seat domed football stadium to host one or more FIFA World Cup soccer matches in 2026. The NFL commonly approves Super Bowl games to cities that have built new stadiums for their NFL teams.
Vegas Nation: Raiders keeping things light
Bryan Salmond and Michael Gehlken discuss how the Raiders are handling their bye week, including what the players have planned to recharge for the rest of the season.
Dean Heller On Raiders Stadium
Sen. Dean Heller wants to ensure the new Raiders’ stadium in Las Vegas is able to issue tax-exempt bonds. The Tax Cut and Jobs Act unveiled last week in the House of Representatives includes a provision that prevents professional sports stadiums from issuing tax-exempt bonds. Without an exemption, that change would alter the financing of the Raiders stadium. Heller made his comments while appearing Wednesday on Nevada Politics Today.
Vegas Nation: Raiders prepare for Patriots, Jack Del Rio plays bocce ball
Review-Journal Vegas Nation host Bryan Salmond and reporter Michael Gehlken talk about the Raiders preparing for the Patriots and Jack Del Rio playing in a charity bocce ball tournament.
Vegas Nation: The Raiders defeat the Dolphins 27-24
¿Puedes decir postemporada? Los Raiders no están del todo de regreso, pero obtuvieron una muy necesaria victoria contra los Miami Dolphins el domingo por la noche. Derek Carr recuperó la ofensiva con una victoria de 27-24 sobre los Dolphins. Carr lanzó para 300 yardas y conectó un touchdown profundo con Johnny Holton.
Social Sound Off: Raiders beat Dolphins
Bryan Salmond and Kelly Stewart go over the best tweets from the Raiders win over the Miami Dolphins.
Vegas Nation: Raiders declare who will be inactive against Dolphins
Review-Journal reporter Michael Gehlken discusses Raiders' injuries and who will be inactive against the Dolphins on Sunday.
Vegas Nation Red Zone: Lynch Returns for Raiders matchup against the Dolphins
Bryan Salmond and Gilbert Manzano discuss the Raiders matchup against the Miami Dolphins on Sunday.
Vegas Nation: Marshawn Lynch Practices Before Game Against Dolphins
Bryan Salmond and Raiders beat writer Michael Gehlken go over Marshawn Lynch returning to practice and the Gabe Jackson suffering from an ankle injury.
Vegas Nation: Marshawn Lynch Reinstated From One Game Suspension
Raiders beat writer Michael Gehlken and Bryan Salmond go over Marshawn Lynch being reinstated after his one game suspension due to unsportsmanlike conduct and the injury report.
Vegas Nation: Raiders Lose To Bills
Review-Journal Vegas Nation host Bryan Salmond and reporters Gilbert Manzano, Ed Graney and Michael Gehlken recap today's game against the Buffalo Bills. The Raiders are still struggling on offense and defense and Derek Carr threw two more interceptions.
Vegas Nation: The Raiders lose against Bills 34-14
Asi que la ofensiva explosiva de los Raiders fue una cosa de una semana. Los Raiders volvieron a sus viejos caminos el domingo, ya que perdieron en contra los Bills 34 a 14.
Social Sound Off: Raider Nation Reacts To Loss Against Bills
Review-Journal Vegas Nation host Bryan Salmond and handicapper Kelly Stewart showcase the tweets from Raider Nation after the Raiders' 34-14 lost to the Buffalo Bills on Sunday, Oct. 29, 2017.
Bills fans unique style of tailgating
Buffalo Bills fans tailgate in unique style nearby New Era Field in Orchard Park, New York, ahead of the team's game against the Oakland Raiders.
Review-Journal reporters participate in tailgating shenanigans in Orchard Park
The Review-Journal's Ed Graney and Adam Hill join in on some early tailgaiting festivities ahead of the Bills vs. Raiders in Orchard Park, New York.
Meet Pinto Ron - one of the Buffalo Bills' wild tailgaters
Review-Journal sports columnist Ed Graney ventured into the New Era Field's tailgating lots and found "Pinto Ron" - one of the Buffalo Bills' most renowned tailgaters.
Vegas Nation Red Zone: Raiders face Buffalo Bills Sunday
Bryan Salmond and Gilbert Manzano go over what to expect during the Raiders game against the Buffalo Bills on Sunday.
Vegas Nation: Amari Cooper back on track
Bryan Salmond and Michael Gehlken talk about Amari Cooper's reemergence as well as injuries in the secondary.
Vegas Nation: Marshawn Lynch Suspended One Game
Bryan Salmond and Raiders beat writer Michael Gehlken go over how the Raiders offense will be affected now that Marshawn Lynch is suspended for one game. The Raiders will play the Buffalo Bills on Sunday and will try to continue the momentum from their win against the Kansas City Chiefs.
Vegas Nation: Raiders Snag Season-Saving Win Over Chiefs
Bryan Salmond, Gilbert Manzano, Ed Graney and Michael Gehlken discuss the hectic, chaotic and exciting Thursday night contest that ended with the Raiders taking down the Kansas City Chiefs, including Amari Cooper's breakout game, Marshawn Lynch's ejection and an immediate difference-maker on the defensive side of the ball.
Vegas Nation: Nacion Vegas: The Raiders lose 16-10 against the Broncos
Era una noche fea para los Raiders quien perdió el juego 16-10 en contra los Denver Broncos.
Nashville paints a picture for what Las Vegas could experience as a pro sports town
Floyd Reese, the general manager of the Tennessee Titans when they embarked on their move from Houston to Nashville, and the president of the Nashville Convention and Visitors Corp., Butch Spyridon, discuss how the city of Nashville transformed into a professional sports town.
Raiders fans in Nashville weigh in on the team's move
Ahead of the first Oakland Raiders game of the season in Nashville, Tenn., fans of the team from near and far gave their opinions on the Raiders' move to Las Vegas and whether or not they'd continue to support them.
Raiders reportedly negotiating to play in Oakland through 2020 season
The Raiders are reportedly negotiating to play in Oakland through the 2020 season. The Raiders currently have an agreement to play at the Oakland Alameda County Coliseum through 2018. SFGate reports that Raiders President Marc Badain has been discussing extending the team’s lease with the coliseum authority. That doesn’t worry Clark County Commission Chairman Steve Sisolak. He thinks they're just trying to be cautious. Contractors say they are confident they can finish a new Las Vegas stadium in 31 months. Sisolak says the project is still on target to be complete by 2020.
Construction comes to life at Raiders Stadium site in Las Vegas
Construction activity is coming to life at the Raiders Stadium site in Las Vegas. Heavy vehicles, cranes and water trucks were visible at the site at Russell Road and Dean Martin Drive, just west of Interstate 15. A formal groundbreaking for the $1.9 billion, 65,000-seat domed stadium is expected in late November. Plans indicate the stadium will be 225 feet tall with 10 levels. It is also expected to gave a see-through video wall.
Raiders, Donald Penn finalize 2-year, $21M extension
The Raiders and Donald Penn have finalized a 2-year, $21 million contract extension. The veteran left tackle is now under contract through the 2019 season. All of the team’s five starting offensive linemen to begin the season are signed through at least the 2018 campaign. Penn, 34, skipped all of training camp amid dissatisfaction with a $5.8 million salary. The Raiders waited until after Sunday’s season opener versus the Tennessee Titans before making a concerted effort to negotiate.
Social Sound Off: Raiders Season Opener
The Review-Journal’s Bryan Salmond and handicapper Kelly Stewart bring you Vegas Nation social sound off post game show for the Raiders victory over the Titans. (Las Vegas Review-Journal)
ESPN's Pete Derzis talks about the future of the Las Vegas Bowl
ESPN television executive Pete Derzis talks about the Las Vegas Bowl during a kickoff luncheon at the Hard Rock Hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada, on August 31, 2017. (Ron Kantowski/ Las Vegas Review Journal)
Vegas Nation social sound off: Raiders' preseason loss to Rams
The Review-Journal’s Bryan Salmond and handicapper Kelly Stewart bring you the first Vegas Nation social sound off post game show. (Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Vegas Nation: Derek Carr returns to lead Raiders offense
The Review-Journal Vegas Nation crew Michael Gehlken, Gilbert Manzano and Bryan Salmond recap the Raiders' preseason home opener to the Los Angeles Rams. (Las Vegas Review-Journal)
TOP NEWS
ad-315×600
News Headlines
pos-2 — ads_infeed_1
post-4 — ads_infeed_2
Local Spotlight
Events
Home Front Page Footer Listing
Circular
You May Like

You May Like