Results 1 to 13 of 13

Thread: Metro: Aussie Hayden Smith learning game in Jets camp

  1. #1
    Jets Insider VIP
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Posts
    22,809
    Post Thanks / Like

    Metro: Aussie Hayden Smith learning game in Jets camp

    KRISTIAN DYER NEW YORK
    [B]Published: [/B]May 05, 2012 10:19 a.m.

    Jets tight end Hayden Smith found himself in a different kind of scrum following the first day of Jets rookie camp, surrounded by a dozen members of the media.

    Smith signed a reported multi-year deal with the Jets in early April without having ever played football. The Australian-born Smith went to [URL="http://www.metro.us/newyork/sports/article/1142224--aussie-hayden-smith-learning-game-in-jets-camp#"]college[/URL] in the United States and played rugby, eventually representing America on the international stage with the national team. Friday brought the intriguing athlete his first up-close glimpse of the NFL.

    Smith, signed purely on potential following a workout with the Jets, stands at 6-foot-7 and tips the scales at 260 pounds.

    “There’s a huge difference between being a fan and watching the game and then being there -- learning the system, all the reads, the defensive looks.

    All the breadth and depth of knowledge is impressive,” Smith told Metro.

    “Today was the first time I’ve put on a helmet -- quite interesting.”

    Rugby, while a physically challenging game, is of course a different sport than football. There are no shoulder pads and helmets in rugby and the concept of the line of scrimmage is vastly different. The NFL is about short bursts of energy and practice resembles that, nothing like Smith’s rugby practice which was much more free-flowing.

    It is difficult enough for a rookie to get acclimated to the speed of play and tempo of practice in the NFL, but Smith isn’t just going from college to the professional ranks. He’s transitioning from one sport to another. In fact, Smith said that there is no playbook in rugby.

    “There’s much more of an emphasis on the technique. If you don’t use your technique it makes it very difficult. In rugby you kind of get away with just throwing yourself in. Football can be the same, but there is more of an emphasis in technique,” Smith said. “Practice is more structured; rugby is free-flowing.”

    Smith had his head on a pivot throughout practice as players buzzed around him, running to different stations for drills and moving as units. In drills, including 7-on-7 and then full 11-on-11 to end practice, Smith carefully observed on the reps he sat out, taking mental notes of what the players around him were doing. He earned praise for one jumping catch he had, but there were also lots of “learning moments” as well.

    New offensive coordinator Tony Sparano repeatedly yelled at Smith “Aussie! Finish him! Finish him off!” during blocking drills.

    “Both sports you have ‘to finish,’ but it means different things in different sports,” Smith said.

    “It’s a key term we use here and it’s something the coaches have focused on. Especially with run blocking -- to finish the block.”

    Then of course, there was that helmet. Indentations were still on his forehead from the helmet’s padding as Smith stood in the locker room, drinking water outside his locker. Even as he learns a new sport, at least Friday taught Smith that wearing a helmet wasn’t too bad.

    “It was quite comfortable, interesting enough,” Smith said. “You’d think it’d be difficult, but once you put it on, [it’s] not at all uncomfortable.”

    [URL]http://www.metro.us/newyork/sports/article/1142224--aussie-hayden-smith-learning-game-in-jets-camp[/URL]

  2. #2
    Hall Of Fame
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    Ormond Beach, Florida
    Posts
    12,686
    Post Thanks / Like
    Thanks for posting and I hope this player can contribute this year. He seems very talented and eager to learn and be successful.

  3. #3
    Rookie
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    817
    Post Thanks / Like
    I am sure he is gonna be a great blocker considering blocking is not allowed in Rugby

  4. #4
    All Pro
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Philadelphia
    Posts
    7,078
    Post Thanks / Like
    [QUOTE=eric1520;4460631]I am sure he is gonna be a great blocker considering blocking is not allowed in Rugby[/QUOTE]

    hahaha.

    I don't know anything about the guy, but he appears to be a very good athlete... so hopefully he's a fast learner.

  5. #5
    All Pro
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Posts
    6,100
    Post Thanks / Like
    [QUOTE=eric1520;4460631]I am sure he is gonna be a great blocker considering blocking is not allowed in Rugby[/QUOTE]

    Clearly you have never seen the violence within a good scrum ... With no pads.

  6. #6
    Rookie
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    817
    Post Thanks / Like
    [QUOTE=Dunnie;4460638]Clearly you have never seen the violence within a good scrum ... With no pads.[/QUOTE]

    I played in college, I would say blocking is more like a ruck or maul
    Last edited by eric1520; 05-05-2012 at 03:41 PM.

  7. #7
    All Pro
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Posts
    6,100
    Post Thanks / Like
    [QUOTE=eric1520;4460653]I played in college, I would say blocking is more like a ruck or maul[/QUOTE]

    I did not play organized rugby (only fraternity stuff)... But I agree with what you are saying :)

  8. #8
    Jets Insider VIP
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Posts
    2,112
    Post Thanks / Like
    [QUOTE=Dunnie;4460660]I did not play organized rugby (only fraternity stuff)... But I agree with what you are saying :)[/QUOTE]

    Played with the Albany Half Blacks in Ga in the 80's and blocking was like holding in the NFL, you did it all the time but had to be subtle about it. Doesn't translate unfortunately, as there's nothing subtle about NFL blocking.

    Regardless, give Hayden a year and he's going to be a starter.

  9. #9
    Jets Insider VIP
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Posts
    22,809
    Post Thanks / Like
    [QUOTE=eric1520;4460631]I am sure he is gonna be a great blocker considering blocking is not allowed in Rugby[/QUOTE]

    I'm sure not every basketball skill translated to rugby yet he seemed to make the transition quickly and quite well

  10. #10
    Waterboy
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Posts
    63
    Post Thanks / Like

    Hayden Smith

    Any updates on how he is doing in camp?

  11. #11
    Hall Of Fame
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Rochester, NY
    Posts
    13,793
    Post Thanks / Like
    well... the Jets just signed an undrafted blocking TE, so.... :dunno:

  12. #12
    All League
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Posts
    4,042
    Post Thanks / Like
    Yep, need some more updates on his progress.

  13. #13
    All League
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Posts
    3,548
    Post Thanks / Like
    He might never get it or he may end up being an all pro someday, keeping my fingers crossed

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

Follow Us