Fresh off the Bears’ meeting with Illinois running back Rashard Mendenhall on Thursday, word is the club recently got together with Central Florida’s Kevin Smith. General manager Jerry Angelo was present, our source tells us.
With two weeks to go until the draft, clubs are working as diligently to put out smokescreens as they are to polish off final preparations.
“Jerry invented the smokescreen,” one prominent agent said in a conversation Thursday.
That’s what interest in Mendenhall would appear to be. The need at offensive tackle is alarming and it’s much easier to find serviceable backs than it is serviceable tackles. Interest in Smith could be more genuine.
Smith is an interesting prospect and he revealed in Thursday’s South Florida Sun-Sentinel that he’s had a couple private workouts lately but has been told to keep a wrap on the identities of the clubs.
``If I could tell you, I would,’’ Smith told the Sun-Sentinel. ``But I don’t want to mess up their promises to me by breaking my promise to them.’’
Agent Drew Rosenhaus did not respond to a message seeking confirmation on the Bears’ meeting with Smith.
Smith visited the Miami Dolphins for a workout today as a local prospect.
The 6-1, 217-pounder ran a 4.53-second 40-yard dash at the combine and improved the figure to 4.47 at his pro day March 20 (that the Bears attended). He’s added nine pounds of muscle since his college season ended and figures to be selected somewhere in the first three rounds. The Bears have already looked over some backs who might be available when they select at No. 44 in the second round—Texas’ Jamaal Charles, Tulane’s Matt Forte and Arkansas’ Felix Jones. Jones has a chance to be selected in the back end of the first round.
Smith ran for 2,567 yards, tops in the NCAA, and 29 touchdowns last season and here are some highlights.