On one sideline, we have Ravens wide receiver Steve Smith. On the other sideline, we have Broncos cornerback Aqib Talib.
Will we see another altercation between them Sunday?
Smith and Talib got into a scuffle back in 2013, when Smith was with the Panthers and Talib was with the Patriots. Talib wouldn’t let Smith’s leg go after catching a pass. The two players shoved and were quickly separated by teammates, and Talib was given a 15-yard penalty.
Smith got the last laugh, because the Panthers won, and because Smith uttered his memorable phrase, “Ice up son”, directed at Talib, who did not finish the game.
So what does Smith expect Sunday in the rematch?
“We’ve had our battles, but there’s no animosity,” Smith said this week.
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Asked how he tries to remain composed during games, Smith smiled sarcastically and said, “I’m a hothead, so I’m not sure. I have nothing to say, really. What’s in the past is in the past. We’re looking forward.”
However, in his last game action, Smith was ejected for a tussle with Redskins cornerback Chris Culliver during the third preseason game. After Smith was ejected, he joined his son Peyton in the stands, and the picture of them posted on Twitter went viral.
The last thing the Ravens need is Smith getting ejected Sunday. Not with rookie wide receiver Breshad Perriman (knee) already out of the lineup. But Ravens coach John Harbaugh said he wasn’t worried about Smith losing his cool.
“I don’t worry about Steve,” Harbaugh said. “Steve is a great competitor, a very mature guy. I believe Steve knows what he’s doing He knows how to get himself ready to play. He knows how to channel his energy – probably better now than ever in his career. We all work on that. Steve is going to be focused and ready to play football, and it’s going to be about football.”
We’ll see if Harbaugh is right. He wants to see Smith play four quarters, not go another round with Talib.