Brad Smith still the Wildcat in Buffalo

Brad Smith, right, is still trying to acclimate to the Buffalo offense.

He was Mr. Versatility last year for the Jets and though he now plays for the Bills, Brad Smith is making just as big of an impact for his new team. New meets old on Sunday when the Jets travel to Buffalo to face Smith and his 5-2 Bills.

Smith is returning kickoffs, catching balls and playing in the Bills’ version of the Wildcat, bringing his unique athleticism to upstate New York. It was his combination of size and speed that led the Jets to gamble with a fourth-round pick in the 2006 NFL Draft and take a quarterback from Missouri, turning him into a wide receiver and kickoff returner who would dabble under center from time to time.

And it’s that role in the Wildcat where the Jets miss him the most.

“Brad is the best Wildcat quarterback in the league, or Wildcat running back. With Brad, it’s quarterback, because you have to defend the pass, as well,” Jets head coach Rex Ryan said. “We hated to see him leave, but sometimes that happens. You have 19 unsigned free agents. We knew it was going to be a challenge, but we definitely wanted Brad back. Unfortunately, we were unable to sign him.”

Smith, however, is slowly getting acclimated to his new team and while he is making an impact in several different facets of the game, his role is still growing. Due to the lockout that nearly threatened the season, Smith wasn’t able to get an extended offseason with his new team to learn the wrinkles of how they will use him.

“We didn’t get an offseason to implement him and to implement the things that I think he’ll be able to do long-term for us,” Bills head coach Chan Gailey said.

There has been some frustration in getting Smith fully integrated to the Bills offense.

“I think it’s just coming from nowhere. No background with each other; learning the entire offense at quarterback and at receiver. Just trying to get the plays down for the future,” Smith said. “They were able to work me in a few times to get the Wildcat stuff in. It was never a big deal to me. It’s more about winning and both things don’t always show up.”

With the Jets’ offseason moves, including re-signing Santonio Holmes and bringing in wide receivers Plaxico Burress and Derrick Mason, Smith never seemed likely to return to the team that drafted him. Though he was a fan favorite and valuable to both the offense and the special teams, the Jets made a choice to let Smith go. He admits that there will be a lot of emotions on Sunday as he faces the team that took a chance on him when he was a bit of an unknown coming out of college.

He called his experience with the Jets “very comfortable.”

“It was a place that I liked playing — the organization, the people. I was very comfortable there and I liked it. Being here in Buffalo is definitely a growing experience just personally as a football player, just learning and have a chance to be around these guys who have an unbelievable drive to win,” Smith said. “It’s helping me grow and hopefully I’ll contribute something to help them.”

Follow Jets beat writer Kristian Dyer on Twitter @KristianRDyer.


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Easter 2014: The year's best bonnets

It's Easter, and that means it's time for Fifth Avenue to turn into a veritable catwalk of bonnet-wearers. The annual march, which kicks off at…

Local

Woman arrested for attempted kidnapping of baby in…

Authorities said that a Queens woman behind an attempted kidnapping of an 8-month-old baby boy was arrested on Saturday.

Local

Hate crime charge in attack on Sikh Columbia…

A man has been arrested and charged with a hate crime after he allegedly pulled the beard of a Sikh Columbia University professor as part…

Local

NYPD arrest man after finding body inside plastic…

Police said they found a man stuffed inside a plastic container in a Brooklyn home. Authorities arrested Joshua Simser, 24, in connection to the death

Television

Discovery cancels 'Everest Jump Live' special in wake…

The Discovery Channel has indicated it will not be moving forward with "Everest Jump Live," a planned special about mountain climber Joby Ogwyn's effort to…

The Word

'X-Men' director Bryan Singer drama continues

  News broke late last week that "X-Men" and "The Usual Suspects" director Bryan Singer is being sued by a man who said Singer molested…

The Word

Miley Cyrus cancels more dates, tweeting from hospital

Miley Cyrus is reportedly so sick that she's had to postpone more tour dates. We know this because she has been sitting in a hospital…

Music

Loop are, er, um, back in the loop

Experimental noise rock band Loop's three mid-1980s to early-1990s albums, “Heavens End,” “Fade Out” and “A Gilded Eternity,” were mercifully reissued.

NHL

Rangers blow two-goal lead in Game 2 loss…

The Rangers got out to an early 2-0 lead in Game 2 and the Garden was rocking. But it went downhill quickly from there.

NBA

Deron Williams leads Nets over Raptors in Game…

The Nets traveled to a raucous Air Canada Centre but came out with an important Game 1 victory over the Raptors.

NBA

Carmelo Anthony agonizing over Knicks future as season…

There’s still the cloud hanging over the franchise’s head as to the pending free-agent status of All-Star forward Carmelo Anthony.

NFL

Jets host players with eye toward NFL Draft

The Jets hosted a number of NFL Draft hopefuls for workouts on Thursday, with an eye toward some under-the-radar players.

Travel

Packing: The one thing you need in your…

A new survey that looks at the travel habits of 50,000 people around the world has revealed that Western and Asian globetrotters have different priorities…

Home

Is your chair making it hard to talk?

Ever wished there was an office chair that could make impromptu meetings and discussions more private? The Cristiana Wing Chair is an asymmetrical armchair which…

Travel

Live large at these luxury hotels

From Thai boxing lessons and macabre Dracula tours to the Australian Outback, the Four Seasons hotel chain launched a series of new travel packages this…

Parenting

4 things that every summer camp should have

Alan Saltz, director of the 92nd street Y program lists things that every summer camp should have.