As Justin Smith prepared this past week to play in his first Super Bowl with the San Francisco 49ers, the Pro Bowl defensive end took time to recall his seven-year career with the Cincinnati Bengals:
We didn’t win a ton of games there, but I learned a lot about football from Dick LeBeau to Marvin Lewis and Jay Hayes and those types of guys that I learned from. It was definitely part of my growing process.
Former Bengals defensive tackle John Thornton had this to say of Smith’s days in Cincinnati:
Justin’s old school. He did things a little bit differently from the way Marvin did things when he came in. He wasn’t into a lot of film study and he wasn’t into all the stunting and stuff. He just wanted to line up and go. But when it came time to practice and play, he was always there giving 100 percent. You look at Rob, who’s not as athletic as Justin, but they’re the same type of effort, reliable players.