Linebacker | Notre Dame | Junior
Height:6 feet, 2 inches| Weight:223 pounds
2015: Smith started all 13 games, leading the team with 114 tackles and five pass breakups while ranking third in tackles for loss (9.0). Smith suffered ACL and LCL injuries in the Fiesta Bowl against Ohio State.
Career: Smith started 38 games and racked up 293 tackles (175 solo), 24.5 tackles for loss, 4.5 sacks, 10 passes broken up and three forced fumbles. Smith really broke out in his second two seasons with the Fighting Irish. His performance earned him a number of awards, including being named a midseason first-team All-American by SI.com and CBS Sports and receiving the 2015 collegiate Butkus Award, which was won by Vikings linebacker Eric Kendricks the previous season.
*Smith did not participate in on-field combine drills because of his injuries. *
Summary: In late December 2013, Smith was part of a Notre Dame team that boasted the **highest winning** percentage (.733) in FBS history, beating out Michigan (.732).
Prior to injuring his knee in the Fiesta Bowl, Smith was predicted as a top pick in the draft, but combine medical reports project him to miss at least the 2016 season.
This past season, Smith set a career-high with 14 tackles in the win over USC (Oct. 17) and then broke that sum with 15 at No. 9 Stanford on Nov. 28. He reached double digits in tackles five times in the last six games of the regular season.
Stacking up:NFL Media analysts Mike Mayock and Bucky Brooks both listed Smith as the number one linebacker in their pre-combine position rankings. Daniel Jeremiah ranked Smith 10th overall in his list of top 50 draft prospects but removed him after the combine because of the medical exam.
In good company:Smith joined Chargers linebacker Manti Te'o as the only two Notre Dame players under head coach Brian Kelly to record at least 100 tackles in consecutive seasons. Te'o reached the mark three straight years (2010-12). Smith made 112 tackles in 2014. He is the first Notre Dame player with at least 113 tackles, 9.0 tackles for loss and five passes defended since linebacker Courtney Watson in 2003. Smith and Te'o are also the only two players to have received both the collegiate and high school Butkus awards.