Here comes a patented MB long post!
I was just about to say he definitely would not make it. But then I looked at some of the guys already in, and I changed my mind. He's now a decent chance in my book...it just depends on how Hall of Fame voters perceive his career and "legacy."
Smith is a really good and really consistent player. It's almost a given that he will have a 1000+ yard, 6+ TD campaign. He has over 11,000 yards and over 60 TD's in his career. Those are great numbers.
Here would be my argument against Smith...you have to be a big-time performer and make yourself totally stand out at your position to be in the Hall
. Smith has had some big years (over 110 receptions twice, 1600 yards in one year and 6 - 8 TD's every year), but he hasn't helped "define the position" that others like Alworth, Barry, Hirsch, Largent, Belitnikoff, and Maynard did.
Then I looked at James Lofton - the latest of the WR's in the Hall right now.
The guy was really good for a really long time (14,000 yards, 75 TDs in 15 years). If Smith plays another 3 years, he's going to match and exceed these numbers.
Therefore, what would be holding him out? No appearances in the Super Bowl.
It's hard to showcase yourself as an all-time player if you never make it to the big game. He was close once, but he will still not be remembered for a SB appearance. Sure, Lofton never won one, but he was in four of them and played a major part in the offense to compliment Kelly and Thurman Thomas.
Another thing hampering Smith is that he's a "low-key" performer. He does what he has to do and doesn't pull a TO. When you think back to the good Jaguars teams in the mid 90s, who do you think about? Well, I'd think of Mark Brunell, Fred Taylor, Tony Boselli...and then probably Jimmy Smith. Not having that spotlight can be a good thing, but if Hall voters are looking for a standout performer, they might not remember Jimmy.
He has Hall of Fame type numbers, but will people actually remember Jimmy Smith? I sure will because I think he's one of the best fantasy WR's a team could have - not thought about right away (at least in the past three years), good consistent numbers every year, and a decent amount of scores. But, without a standout performance in a big game like the Super Bowl, I can understand if he doesn't make the Hall.