Telvin Smith spent his high school football career in constant transition. He started at safety, went to defensive end, then settled into being a linebacker, where the position became his preference and best fit his personality. “I just like the fact it’s in the middle of everything. It’s the heart of the defense,” said Smith, a Valdosta, Ga., native, who became a big part of the Florida State defense, leading the national champions in tackles (90) while pulling down three interceptions. “I feel that’s how I lead ... by my ability to showcase,” said Smith, who then gave his practice Tuesday at the Senior Bowl as example. “I kinda feel like I turned it up a bit and the guys rallied around it, and everyone started to get crazy and got loud,” Smith said. “Things like that have driven me to play linebacker.” So please, all you NFL teams, please don’t ask him if he would consider moving to safety. “Nobody has asked me about it yet, and I hope they don’t, because if they do, I don’t want to get rude,” said Smith, who made a career high 15 tackles in FSU’s win against Auburn in the BCS Championship game. “That is not an option for me.” But here’s the deal: Smith officially weighed in Monday to begin Senior Bowl practices at 6-foot-2, 218 pounds. The weight total sent murmurs throughout the giant room in the Mobile Convention Center where NFL scouts gather, view and often react to every player’s body and size announcement as he stands wearing only undershorts. Now, there is some history here, especially at Florida State. Derrick Brooks was not a whole lot heavier when he weighed in 19 years ago to play in the Senior Bowl and became the defensive MVP of the 1995 game. That helped Brooks, a Pensacola native and Washington High graduate, become a first-round pick by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Brooks did finish his playing career at 235 pounds, but there were many concerns with his size 20 years ago. Scouts and front-office personnel wondered if he was big enough to play linebacker in the NFL.
FSU's Telvin Smith has big hopes for NFL
Florida Today | Jan 25