After the first two Seminoles are taken in this weekend's NFL Draft (a near-unanimous chorus of Jalen Ramsey and Roberto Aguayo has resounded on this front), there is room for much speculation on who will be the third Florida State alumnus taken and in which round it will fall. One main player in the conversation for being the third 'Nole taken off the board is linebacker Terrance Smith, who just finished a five-year career at FSU.
Among Smith's strengths are his proficiency in run coverage where he shows good instincts, his ability to shed blocks, and his acceleration, which allows him to get into the backfield quickly and blow up a play in the backfield. His acceleration also can be utilized to stay with many running backs and tight ends in coverage. Another positive aspect of Smith's game is his experience playing both at inside and outside linebacker.
Drawbacks to Smith's game include his durability, contested because he suffered separate injuries in each of his two seasons as a full-time starter, and the fact that he is a bit of a liability in pass coverage. He also is at times a bit too overly aggressive in his tackle attempts, racking up an undesirable 24 missed tackles over the last two years of his Florida State career.
Despite his experience in multiple linebacker roles, Smith's professional future projects at outside linebacker due to his size. Smith's 6'3, 235-pound frame is widely regarded as too small to consistently contribute in the middle at the next level. There are obviously exceptions to this rule (one of the most recent examples is former Seminole Telvin Smith) but Smith's size likely limits his position in the NFL.
During his time at Florida State, Smith played in 50 games and, on top of serving as a crucial cog of the Seminole defense, he was also a key special-teams member and should contribute immediately on special teams even if he is not immediately ready to hold down a starting spot in the linebacker corps on the team that drafts him.