Geno Smith works on changing perception on first day at Jets camp

Geno Smith gave himself poor grades on his first day at minicamp, but the coaching staff was satisfied. Credit: Getty Images
Geno Smith gave himself poor grades on his first day at minicamp, but the coaching staff was satisfied.
Credit: Getty Images

Following the first day of rookie minicamp, Jets quarterback Geno Smith sounded humble and contrite, often hitting on how hard he has worked at getting ready for today. In other words, he sounded nothing like the player who drew negative storylines leading up to the NFL Draft.

Smith was the target of a Pro Football Weekly report just three weeks before the NFL Draft that claimed he was “not a student of the game” and “not committed or focused.” The report played a role in Smith dropping to the Jets in the second round. Reports after the draft claimed Smith interviewed poorly and tweeted during predraft meetings with teams. The fact that he fired his agent last week only exacerbated the perception that Smith lacks maturity.

But on Friday following his first time on the field for the Jets, Smith did his best to erase that perception.

“I don’t think anyone who has worked with me or known me in the past has had anything negative to say. From what I’ve seen coaches and teammates have all said great things about me,” Smith said. “But I’m not focused on that, I’m focused on what I have here with the Jets and proving myself to my teammates and coaches. Like I said, I am trying to improve myself daily.”

It was a rocky first day at work for Smith, who at first glance lacked the composure and finesse in the pocket one would hope to see from a top pick. His downfield accuracy struggled and he bopped around the pocket with a lack of comfort and vision. His short passing game was solid but it is clear Smith is a work in progress.

The transition could be steep for Smith, despite his gaudy numbers at West Virginia. Operating out of the Airraid offense, Smith was often in the shotgun and will have to adjust to being under center with the Jets.

“[I'll be under center] probably more than recently but it felt like a natural transition,” Smith said. “Obviously there’s some things I need to clean up and I’m going work on that with [quarterback] coach [David] Lee, [offensive coordinator Marty] Mornhinweg. It didn’t feel too odd to me so I think I did a pretty good job.”

With strong athletic ability and a good arm, Smith has the potential to be a solid quarterback for the Jets. His intermediate passes always were right at the numbers of his wide receivers and in college he showed good arm strength.

He earned praise from head coach Rex Ryan for his command of the huddle and Ryan said there were no red flags in the draft process that would back up the claims made about Smith.

“Maybe I don’t know what diva behavior looks like but he didn’t do it here,” Ryan said.

Smith for his part has been putting in an effort to try to distance himself from the negative criticism. He held a meeting with his offensive line last night to go over verbiage in the huddle and he’s spoken with the three other quarterbacks on the Jets roster. In short, he’s doing what he should be doing.

For someone who isn’t supposed to be a student of the game, Smith is doing his best to sound like one.

“I don’t think it was too foreign to me. First of all, I studied my butt off to get prepared for today,” Smith said. “Then there’s more work going into getting ready for tomorrow. It’s going to be a transition but that’s expected. But I’m going to work at it and work my best to get my best foot forward.”

Follow Jets beat writer Kristian Dyer on Twitter @KristianRDyer.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

MAP: New York City Street Closures August 22,…

The Percy Sutton Harlem 5K and NYC Family Health Walk-a-thon and Pakistan Day Parade and Fair will cause traffic delays and street closures in New York City this weekend. Plan…

International

U.N. nuclear inquiry on Iran seen making slow…

The U.N. nuclear watchdog appears to have made only limited progress so far in getting Iran to answer questions about its suspected atomic bomb research, diplomatic sources said on Friday,…

National

Violence-weary Missouri town sees second night of calm

By Nick Carey and Carey GillamFERGUSON Mo. (Reuters) - The violence-weary town of Ferguson, Missouri, saw a second straight evening of relative calm on Thursday…

National

Journalist James Foley's parents, after call with pope,…

The parents of James Foley, the American journalist killed by Islamic State militants in Iraq, on Friday called for prayer and support to free the remaining captives held by Islamic…

Television

Recap: 'The Knick,' Season 1, Episode 3, 'The…

The third episode of Steven Soderbergh's "The Knick" finds Dr. Thackery (Clive Owen) meeting an old flame and other characters embracing self-destruction.

Music

Webcast: Watch Polyphonic Spree live on Sunday Aug.…

Polyphonic Spree singer Tim DeLaughter sits with Metro Music Editor Pat Healy for a chat and then the big band performs live. It begins on Sunday at 9:30 pm

Movies

Matthew Weiner on directing 'Are You Here' and…

"Mad Men" creator Matthew Weiner discusses his movie "Are You Here," his history writing comedy and the tiny movie he directed in 1996 you can't see.

Movies

Michael Chiklis on his football past and 'When…

Michael Chiklis remembers playing football in high school and how that prepped him to play a coach in "When the Game Stands Tall."

NFL

Fantasy football draft guide: How to draft your…

Many are wondering if we’re entering a new age in fantasy football drafting — one where running backs take a backseat.

NFL

Jets vs. Giants: 3 Giants storylines to watch

The Giants have plenty to work on as they reach the dress rehearsal preseason game Friday night against the rival Jets.

NFL

Jets vs. Giants: 3 Jets storylines to watch

Metro looks at three Jets storylines to watch as they play the Giants Friday.

NFL

Giants expected to work Corey Washington into first-team…

The day of reckoning for the Giants' fringe players will fall upon them Friday night against the Jets.

Sex

Big weddings may lead to long-term happiness

Dreaming of a big wedding? A new study indicates that the longer your guest list, the happier you’ll be in the long run. l A…

Sex

Online dating for every generation

Frank Jackson and his mother Maggie are like lots of modern families: They have dinner together regularly, keep each other updated on their lives —…

Wellbeing

Going green could be the key to getting…

If we could just pursue the things that would actually make us happy, we could help the environment too, according to a New York researcher.…

Tech

Siren: A new dating app that puts women…

Online dating can be brutal, especially for single women. Noting that many women hate wading through inappropriate messages and photos, two tech entrepreneurs decided to…