Patriots late to the Steve Smith free agency

After a long career in North Carolina pro bowler Steve Smith hit free agency in the 2014 off season and garnered immediate interest from the Ravens. By the time the Patriots gave Smith a call he was already at the airport about to catch a flight to Baltimore. Smith recalls the phone call he received from Belichick:

Yeah, I talked to [Belichick] and it was a great opportunity as well... Anytime you have an opportunity to go to some teams, it’s always good. When your phone stops ringing, you need to start thinking about if I’m in the right profession.

Many teams were interested in Smith's services but Baltimore got him to sign before leaving the building. He had a renaissance in 2014 with 79 receptions for 1,065 yards and six touchdowns. That is more than any Patriots wide receiver this year (if Gronkowski is not counted, since he officially plays tight end).

When asked about Smith Belichick commented:

I think he’s a real good player on all three levels: short, intermediate and deep. He’s got good run-after-catch skills, so he can take a short pass a long way. Good route runner and he’s made some big plays on the deep ball with his speed and ball skills and downfield judgment, and obviously with a quarterback who can throw it very well down there. Yeah, he’s a dangerous guy.

Smith may not have a stellar performance against a strong New England secondary this Saturday. It also won't help that it will be a high of 20 degrees in Foxboro that day, which may make the ball harder to catch.

Do you believe the Patriots will regret not obtaining Steve Smith after the game Saturday? Let us know in the comments section below!

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