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Minnesota running back Robert Smith
DAL2000112305 - 23 NOVEMBER 2000 - DALLAS, TEXAS, USA: Minnesota running back Robert Smith cuts through the line of scrimmage during the first half of the Dallas Cowboys-Minnesota Vikings game 23 November in Dallas. The Vikings beat the Cowboys 27-15. UPI rw/ih/Ian Halperin
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Robert Scott Smith (born March 4, 1972 in Euclid, Ohio) is a former American football running back who played with the Ohio State Buckeyes and later with the Minnesota Vikings of the NFL. While in college, he openly criticized the Ohio State football staff for not allowing him to concentrate on academics. He declared for the NFL draft shortly after his sophomore year (counting his redshirt his third academic year) leaving many of his fans perplexed. (He also starred in track and field while at Ohio State. Smith is the only player to ever win Ohio's Mr. Football Award twice (in 1988 and 1989).

Smith was selected by the Minnesota Vikings in the first round (21st overall) of the 1993 NFL Draft. Although he suffered from a number of ailments in his first few seasons, he finally broke through in 1997, gaining 1,266 yards. Smith's finest year as a pro came in the 2000 season, leading the NFC in rushing with 1,521 yards. He retired at the end of the season, despite being at the peak of his career.

In eight NFL seasons, Smith rushed for 6,818 yards and 32 touchdowns, along with 178 receptions for 1,292 yards and 6 touchdowns. He also returned 1 punt for 4 yards and 19 kickoffs for a total of 460 yards. Smith wore number 20 as a rookie in 1993, but switched to number 26 when it became available in 1994 and wore it until his retirement.

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License.
It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Robert Smith."
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