INDIANAPOLIS -- By the time a college player arrives here for the scouting combine, he has been tutored in how to handle nagging questions, whether about injuries, legal issues or suspect performance. Alabama offensive tackle Andre Smith had the routine down pretty good when he met with the media today in Lucas Oil Stadium.
Despite some reports his weight has soared to 380 this past season, Smith said he doesn't have a weight problem and he's at 332 right now. The report of 380, he suggested, was grossly exaggerated.
"I've never been that high," he said. "The highest I've been was 345."
On the matter of premature association with an agent, for which Alabama suspended him from their bowl game, Smith said there was no association. "It had nothing to do with an agent, it was just a bad decision," he said, electing not to clarify.
Smith, one of the top three tackles in the draft and a high first-round projection, carries a red flag for his weight and the suspension. Teams will be checking him closely. Still, Mel Kiper's ESPN mock draft has Smith going second to St. Louis. Mike Mayock of NFL Network ranks Smith as the third tackle behind Baylor's Jason Smith and Virginia's Eugene Monroe.
Andre Smith said he hadn't made up his mind whether to work out for scouts here or wait for his pro day in March. "I want to give the best performance I possibly can," he explained. And, he admitted, he has some work to do before he's there.
Veteran NFL and Ravens writer Ken Murray is covering the NFL scouting combine in Indianapolis for The Baltimore Sun. He will keep you updated on developments daily.