Mike Preston: It's time for Jimmy Smith to get more playing time

First-round pick Jimmy Smith is ready to contribute

November 16, 2011|By Mike Preston

I don't know what the Ravens immediate plans are for rookie cornerback Jimmy Smith, but it might be time to get him back on the field. Smith hasn't played much since he injured his ankle on the opening kickoff of the season opener against Pittsburgh.

 In the last couple of weeks, the Ravens have used him on special teams and in some nickel and dime packages, but he might serve them better as the starting nickel over Chris Carr. Carr certainly has more experience, and that's what you want from the inside guy. But Smith is a great talent, a player with game-changing ability. The Ravens certainly could have used some of that against Seattle Sunday.

 I understand the Ravens bringing him along slowly after the high ankle sprain. I understand them not rushing him into the lineup, especially with starters Cary Williams and Lardarius Webb playing so well. But Smith was the team's No. 1 overall draft pick last April, and he'd probably dominate most players, at least physically, in the slot. 

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