Steve Smith Sr.

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Retired Steve Smith Sr. not interested in working out with current players

Retired Steve Smith Sr. not interested in working out with current players

Since announcing his retirement, former Ravens wide receiver Steve Smith Sr. says numerous players are expressing a desire to train with him this offseason.

It’s understandable why players would want to be mentored by Smith, after his brilliant 16-year career.

But while Smith has the time, he does not have the desire.

“People have been calling me, ‘Hey, wanted to work out…let’s watch some film…I need to work on some releases,”’ Smith said to James Lofton and Brad Hopkins on Sirius XM NFL Radio.

“I had some DBs calling me, ‘Hey, you can give me some line work,’ and all that stuff. When I was at the Super Bowl … I had probably about three or four people text me, saying, ‘Hey, let’s get up,’ and I had some agents call me for their guy to help them work their guy out, get him prepared for the combine.

“And I had to take a step back and I said, ‘You know what? If I do all these things, now I’m getting my mind and body to say I can still play.'

“So I had to text some guys and say, ‘You know what? I don’t think it’s a good idea for me to watch film with you and work out and train with you because that means I’m telling myself and my family I’m about to go play again. And I don’t want to go through that process. I’m done playing.’

“So if I’m training anybody, their last name is Smith, meaning my kids. I’m just going to love on them, and that training is less intense. The goal is so lesser. It’s ‘Hey, let’s make sure we’re drinking water, fluid, and all that stuff.’ Out there, when you’re training for ball, it’s a different animal. So I said, ‘No.’’’

Smith sounds determined not to play anymore. He recently signed with NFL Network as an analyst, and he has not given any mixed signals about his desire to start a new chapter in his life.

Ravens owner Steve Bisciotti said at the “State of the Ravens’’ press conference that if Smith wanted to return, the door was open.

However, Smith seems content to keep that door closed.  

RELATED: THE BEST OF STEVE SMITH SR. TRASH TALK

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Recently retired Ravens WR Steve Smith Sr. joins NFL Network

Recently retired Ravens WR Steve Smith Sr. joins NFL Network

Recently retired Ravens wide receiver Steve Smith, Sr. has made a quick transition from playing football to talking about it on television. Smith announced Thursday that he had joined NFL Network as an analyst, beginning Sunday at the Super Bowl.

Smith will appear on a variety of the network’s shows next season, including “NFL GameDay First,” which airs Sunday mornings during the season.

Smith’s outspoken personality should serve him well as an analyst. He has made regular appearances on a variety of networks since the Ravens’ season ended. Being an analyst will keep Smith close to the game as he adjusts to retirement.

“I was blessed to have a long and productive career on the field but now it’s time to turn my attention to the business of covering the game and I couldn’t be more thrilled to be joining the team at NFL Network,” Smith said in a statement. “As the only network with a 100 percent focus on the sport I love, I was drawn to NFL Network and look forward to joining a team made up of so many legends of the game.”

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Ravens owner Steve Bisciotti still holding out 'hope' Smith Sr. returns next year

Ravens owner Steve Bisciotti still holding out 'hope' Smith Sr. returns next year

Ravens owner Steve Bisciotti was smiling when he said it, but he sounded very open to finding a place for Steve Smith Sr. on the 2017 Ravens if he changed his mind about retirement.

“I have not given up hope that Steve Smith is going to come walking in here in September,” Bisciotti said during his “State of the Ravens” press conference. “He is probably not coming in August. We will see about that character. I would not count him out.”

Could Smith have a change of heart when fall draws closer, and the itch to play becomes harder to ignore? Yes, it could happen. But should the Ravens expect that to happen? No way.

Smith already knows he’s going to get the itch, but he doesn’t sound inclined to scratch. He has already filed his retirement papers in typical Smith style.

Also, check out his Tweet from Jan. 8

So for the next few months, the bigger question isn’t whether Smith will return, but whether the Ravens can build an effective wide receiving corps without him. Breshad Perriman needs to improve his route running and become more sure-handed.

General manager Ozzie Newsome said finding a “complimentary” receiver as one of the Ravens’ biggest needs. The Ravens have the option of picking up Mike Wallace’s $4.75 million contract for next season, but will they, especially if they acquire several receivers during the draft and free agency?

Smith had a great 16-year career, and at age 37, he doesn’t have to worry about the Ravens’ offseason issues. Smith’s offseason can last the rest of his life. But if Smith changes his mind, Bisciotti sounds willing to write Smith another check.

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