Former Wyoming running back Trey Smith headed to Jaguars camp
LARAMIE -- Content.
That's the best way to describe Trey Smith's demeanor in late March after blowing through drills for more than 29 NFL scouts and personnel at Wyoming's annual pro day.
"You know, hopefully things will turn out right and I end up in the NFL," the 26-year-old running back said with a smile.
It appears that dream has come true.
And it gets even better.
Smith will suit up for the Jacksonville Jaguars, the same franchise his father, Jimmy Smith, played for 11 seasons. The team has not made the announcement official, but according to social media posts from father and son, Smith will be the third former Wyoming player on this current Jacksonville roster, joining linebacker Chad Muma and safety Andrew Wingard.
The 6-foot, 213-pound Madison, Miss., native played in parts of three seasons in Laramie after becoming a graduate transfer from Louisville in 2019. An ankle injury sidelined him for the season just four games into his UW career. The following season -- a COVID-19-shortened six-game campaign -- Smith rushed for 488 yards on just 88 carries. He averaged 5.5 yards per carry and found the end zone five times.
That all changed last fall.
With a full complement of running backs, led by the school's second all-time leading rusher, Xazavian Valladay, Smith saw his playing time diminish -- to say the least. He carried the ball just nine times during the regular season and mostly appeared on special teams.
Smith's one shining moment came in the Cowboys 52-38 victory over Kent State in the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl. Late in the fourth quarter, Smith blew through a hole in the Flashes' defensive front, juked a linebacker and outraced the entire secondary for a 49-yard touchdown jaunt.
"I knew I had to empty the tank," said Smith, who finished the game with a season-high five carries for 73 yards. "I was just mad as hell. I just wanted to hit some people and let off some frustration from the season."
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Smith becomes the fourth Wyoming player this offseason to sign with a team as a free agent. Oddly enough, three are headed to the Sunshine State. Defensive end Garrett Crall inked with Miami and center Keegan Cryder will attend camp in Tampa Bay. Offensive lineman and Torrington native Logan Harris is heading to Detroit.
Muma, the lone Cowboy drafted this spring, will join Smith in Jacksonville after being selected in the third round.
Jimmy Smith is Jacksonville's all-time leading receiver, hauling in 862 passes for 12,287 yards and 67 touchdowns. Smith, who is in the team's Ring of Fame, has the 25th-most receiving yards in NFL history.
Around these parts, Smith is often remembered for his diving 16-yard touchdown catch off the left arm of Mark Brunell late in the fourth quarter of a stunning 30-27 victory over the top-seeded Denver Broncos in the AFC Divisional round of the 1996 playoffs. Jacksonville was a 14-point underdog that day inside Mile High Stadium.
“Every time I go to Denver, I feel really good for some reason,” Trey Smith joked back in the fall of 2019. “I know that one hurt."
Trey Smith's grandfather, Jimmy Smith Sr., played linebacker for the Cincinnati Bengals in 1968.