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Onterrio Smith ....

Postby Homeless » Wed Aug 13, 2003 1:13 pm

Vikings head coach Mike Tice told reporters Tuesday that running back Onterrio Smith would not be the starter in week one at Green Bay. "That won’t happen," Tice said, according to published reports. "I won’t go into Green Bay and start a rookie. That certainly won’t be a possibility. I’m not saying he won’t play more plays than the other guys in that game if he continues to improve, but I have a real hard time going into Green Bay, with Paul McCartney singing the national anthem or whatever, and starting a rookie in the backfield. I’m very uncomfortable with that."

This will get over-blown by most, but not us. Don't be the fantasy player who only sees the "Smith not the starter" headline and assume Doug Chapman is the way to go. You'll notice Tice all but admitted Onterrio will get more work. Starting a hyped-up, nervous rookie in his first game ever at hostile Lambeau Field isn't a good i! dea. Let them send Smith in on the second series; he'll be the starter in week two at home against the Bears.
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Postby nick_millionaire » Wed Aug 13, 2003 2:57 pm

glad i got him on my team. even if i don't use him.
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Postby Reverend Jim » Wed Aug 13, 2003 3:06 pm

I picked him up this year as well. If he busts out big in the first couple of weeks I'm using him for trade bait, and that's why I picked him up in the draft in the first place. Seemed like a really good gamble to me.
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Postby dgroundhog_ffc » Wed Aug 13, 2003 6:32 pm

He'll be mostly a first and 2nd down back. 3rd and short it's Moe. 3rd and long, it's not Onterrio until he gets his blocking down.

He has talent, runs behind a line that is not only better than last year, one of the biggest lines ever, and possibly one of the most dominant. Culpepper will get time to pass, and the RB's should be able to get their jobs done.

Onterrio's job will be to get the rushing yards on 1st and 2nd down. I'd expect 1200 yds easy, but only 4-5 TD's. He looks like he has good skills running. He needs alot of work on his blocking, and I'm not stating that just from his first play where he may or may not have been responsible for picking up the blitz. I've seen it discussed many times by people who have attended training camp, and the coaching staff has mentioned it a couple of times. Tice has been fairly positivewhen addressing it to the media, but it is a concern, and he simply will not use him routinely in passing situations. As Tice said, he won't start a rookie in the opener basically on principal. I don't buy that the decision has been made in stone at this point, but it demonstrates he is somewhat of a traditionalist.

I'm glad I have him too, and I'm really glad the Vikings have him after losing Bennett, but I'm not counting on him being one of my starters every week. I'd want a better option even as a 3rd RB.
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