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Hunter Smith

Hunter Smith 


6-2, 209
Notre Dame
7 years in the NFL
DOB: 08/09/1977




2002: Saw action in every game, while performing all holding duties - was 66-40.5, with 34.9 net avg. and 26:9 ratio of kicks inside 20:touchbacks - was 3-47.3 at Jacksonville 9/8, 2-44.5 vs. Miami 9/15 and 3-43.0 at Houston 9/22 - was 7-46.3 vs. Cincinnati 10/6, 6-51.7 vs. Baltimore 10/13, 3-27.0 at Pittsburgh 10/21, 5-33.0 at Washington 10/27 -  was 2-40.5 vs. Tennessee 11/3, 5-33.4 at Philadelphia 11/10 and 3-35.7 vs. Dallas 11/17 - was 2-38.0 at Denver 11/24, 9-44.4 vs. Houston 12/1, 2-48.0 at Tennessee 12/8, 6-32.7 at Cleveland 12/15, 5-40.2 vs. NYG 12/22 and 3-36.0 vs. Jacksonville 12/29 - ranked 12th in AFC average, 24th in NFL, T5th in net avg, T15th in NFL - punts In 20 ranked 7th in AFC, T11th in NFL, while setting best seasonal total in Colts history (24, Rohn Stark, 1990) - helped club surrender only 5.8 return average, 7th-best in NFL - is 257-11,068-43.1, 38 TB/74 In 20 for career - prior AFC/NFL ranks for career were T6th/T9th in 1999, T4th/T4th in 2000 and 3rd/4th in 2001, while career net avgs. were 30.6 (1999), 36.4 (2000) and 33.8 (2001) - ranks 4th in Colts history for career attempts (985, Stark; 838, David Lee; 277, Chris Gardocki), 3rd in average (44.8, Gardocki; 43.8, Stark) - with a minimum of 3 attempts/game, has 7 50.0+ avg. games (2nd in club history: 15, Stark; 6, Lee), 18 45.0+ avg. games and 37 40.0+ avg. games (4th in club history: 143, Stark; 96, Lee; 46, Gardocki).


2001: Ranked 3rd in AFC, 4th in NFL, with 68-44.5 punting - ranked behind Ps-Todd Sauerbrun (47.5, Carolina), Shane Lechler (46.2, Oakland) and Tom Rouen (45.3, Denver)&ldots;had 33.8 net average, along with 12 TB and 12 In20 - was 3-50.3 at NYJ 9/9&ldots;did not attempt a punt vs. Buffalo 9/23 - was 6-45.8 at New England 9/30, 6-44.7 vs. Oakland 10/14 and 5-47.8 at Kansas City 10/25 - was 7-44.1 at Buffalo 11/4, 6-43.5 vs. Miami 11/11 and 3-52.7 at Miami 12/10 - was 4-50.5 vs. Atlanta 12/16, 3-42.7 vs. NYJ 12/23, 5-43.0 at St.L. 12/30 and 3-48.3 vs. Denver 1/6. 2000: Totaled 65-2,906-44.7 avg., 9 TB/20 In20 - improved in every statistical category from rookie season - ranked 5th in AFC and T5th in NFL with 44.7 avg - .recorded three games with 50+ average and 12 games with 40+ average - .totaled 4-226-56.5 avg. with long of 62 at Kansas City 9/3 - recorded season-high 57.5 avg. on two punts vs. Oakland 9/10 - named AFC Special Teams Player-of-the- Month for September, the first Colts special teams player to win the honor since K-Cary Blanchard (1996) - connected on punts of 64 yards at Buffalo 10/1, 61 yards at New England 10/8, 63 yards vs. Buffalo 12/11 and then career-long 65 yards vs. Miami 11/26 and vs. Minnesota 12/24 - had one solo special teams tackle vs. Detroit 10/29, chasing down Lions PR-Desmond Howard at the two-yard line to prevent TD - .rushed 11 yards for first down on fake FG attempt vs. NYJ 11/12. POST-SEASON: Totaled 4-171-42.8 avg. with 1 TB and LG of 57 at Miami 12/30. 1999: Totaled 58-2,467-42.5 avg., 8 TB/16 In20&ldots;posted 11 games with 40.0+ average&ldots; totaled 2-105-52.5 avg., 11/7 vs. Kansas City for best average - had season-long 61-yard punt 12/19 vs. Washington - recorded season-high three punts In20 at Philadelphia 11/21 - had season-high 237 yards on five punts 12/12 vs. New England - had one solo special teams tackles 10/31 vs. Dallas. POST-SEASON: Recorded 7-340-48.6 avg. with 1 TB/1 In20 and long of 57 vs. Tennessee 1/16.


1999: Pro Football Weekly, College and Pro Newsweekly All-Rookie Team. 2000: AFC Special Teams Player-of-the-Month (September).


Played in all 45 career games - also handled kickoff and holding duties - ranked third on school's career-record list with 174 punts - 41.2 career average was second-best in school history - originally recruited as QB..was 42-41.7 as senior - finished with 16 In20 - had two punts downed In20 and had 44.0 avg. vs. Michigan - totaled 5-52.2, with career-long 79-yarder, vs. Arizona State - was longest punt for Irish in 63 years (third-longest ever) - was Football News All-Independent first-team - was 50-42.6 as junior - had career-best 17 In20 and season-long of 64 yards vs. Purdue - had season-high 60.0 avg. on two punts vs. Southern California - was 5-45.0 vs. LSU in Independence Bowl - named to Successful Farming Magazine All-America team..was Football News All-Independent first-team - was 44--43.3 as sophomore - registered 65-yarder vs. Air Force - totaled 5-46.4 vs. Ohio State with long of 57 yards - delivered 65-yarder vs. Boston College - took over punting duties as freshman - was 38-36.4 with nine In20 - was 5-42.4 vs. Florida State in Orange Bowl - majored in sociology.


Full name is Hunter Dwight Smith - born in Sherman, Texas - two-time all-state selection at Sherman High School as QB, RB, TE, K and P - was 65-130-975, 13 TDs passing/127-600-8 TDs rushing as senior - also lettered in track and basketball - traveled to Peru in February of 2001 with Morningstar International, a non-denominational ministry - the purpose of the trip was to improve the physical, mental and spiritual lives of impoverished people - instructor for the Colts 101 and 201, an annual women's football clinic - was the featured speaker at the 2000 Area Youth Ministries annual fall banquet - conducts weekly high school Bible studies and is musician who leads worship services - helped to plan a church (Champion's Christian Church) in Indianapolis during spring of 2003 -
Smith and his wife, Jennifer, reside in Carmel, In. 


Sunday, November 16

By John Oehser - Colts.com

Smith's Surprise Touchdown Provides Colts' Game-Winning Points

INDIANAPOLIS - His teammates knew something was up with Hunter Smith late Sunday afternoon. Some just weren't sure what.

It had to do with the way Smith acted on a fourth down late in the third quarter.

The Colts and Jets were tied, 31-31, and Indianapolis faced 4th-and-3 at the New York Jets 21. Colts quarterback Peyton Manning had just thrown incomplete to tight end Dallas Clark, and members of the offense were arguing a call with the referee.
Smith was telling the offense to get off the field, as Colts wide receiver Reggie Wayne recalled it later.
"It just seemed fishy," Wayne said.
Fishy - and very, very effective.

Moments after he rushed the Colts offense off the field, Smith - the Colts' punter - rushed the Colts into a touchdown lead over the Jets. The holder on field goals and extra points for Colts kicker Mike Vanderjagt, Smith took the snap from long snapper Justin Snow, and instead of placing the ball for Vanderjagt, Smith ran over left tackle.
Twenty-one yards later, the Colts led.

The Jets never seriously threatened again.

That the Colts ran a fake field goal wasn't a surprise to Colts players and coaches. The timing wasn't entirely expected.

"We actually had the fake field goal up two or three times earlier," Colts Head Coach Tony Dungy said. "We thought it was there. It just happened."
Dungy and Smith each said the Colts had seen something on film that led them to believe the fake - Smith running directly over the left side - would work.
In several previous games, the Jets had tried to block field goals using nine players on one side of the line of scrimmage. That left the opposite side - the Colts' left - practically undefended, Smith said.
"It was kind of a no-brainer," Smith said. "They have this deal where they put nine guys on one side of the guard and only two guys outside."
Smith said once he saw the Jets' alignment, he called the fake. Not that he was without nerves while making the call.
"I was nervously excited," he said. "Ryan Diem, Joe Dean Davenport, Rick DeMulling - they just ripped the whole wide open.
 Any one could have scored on that."

Said Wayne, "I kind of knew something was up, because he was rushing to get us off the field. I looked up at the Jumbotron and I saw him running. I was like, 'That's it.' Once he gets full-steam going forward, he's hard to stop."

The possibility of the fake was put in by the coaches during the week. But it was still up to Smith execute the play.

"I didn't know the fake was on (on the third-quarter play)," Colts kicker Mike Vanderjagt said. "When he took off with the ball, I was about to kick. I guess that's when I knew. I knew the fake was on for the week, but when I went to go kick the ball, he was off and running.

"It was a certain situation they had to be in. Hunter either saw it or didn't see it. He made the call because he was given the green light to do so."
Although the call itself was surprising, few on the Colts were surprised with Smith's ability to make the play.

"He's a great athlete," Colts quarterback Peyton Manning said. "Believe it or not, Hunter's one the most athletic guys on the team. You have to be an athletic guy to be able to make that play. For the special teams to come through with a touchdown, that was big."

Copyright ©2001-04  

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