Sophomore safety Reggie Smith hasn't been himself the last couple of games. Leg injuries have hurt his speed and mobility and they have just been very sore as he has continued to play. On Tuesday, Smith, who admitted that he has practiced the last two days and that he is feeling much better, sat down to talk to OUInsider.com for the Two Minute Drill.
JH: What everybody wants to know about you is how are you feeling?
RS: "Right now I am just now getting back into the flow of things from missing a few practices because of my injury. But I was back out there today and yesterday."
JH: You have a sore leg, so how difficult is it to work through it?
RS: "It has been real difficult because I think most people think it is a bruised knee. Actually, against Iowa State I was out there playing and on one of the punt returns my thigh bone hit my shin bone down here and it cracked my shin bone, or my tibia. So actually it is more of my leg that is hurting me than my knee."
JH: So every time you take a step, whether you are running or walking, your leg hurts?
RS: "Yeah, it is kind of painful. You have to go through some pain sometimes, but it is getting better."
JH: Does it hurt like shin-splints?
RS: "I have never had shin-splints so I don't know what they feel like. All I know is that this bone hits that bone and it just has some little cracks in it right now."
JH: Is it pain that you will have to deal with for the rest of the season?
RS: "From what the trainers have told me, by the end of next week I should not be feeling it any more. It is going away day by day now."
JH: How did it feel at practice today?
RS: Today it felt pretty good at practice. I got it warmed up pretty good today and it felt pretty good throughout much of practice. Then in one-on-one's it felt pretty bad. By Saturday, I think it will feel a whole bunch better."
JH: Will you require any kind of special medical attention the rest of the season?
RS: "No, they just have me on crutches to take the pressure of it during the day when I am going to classes and stuff. So that is all that I am really doing."
JH: You are going to need your legs in this game coming up with Missouri aren't you?
RS: "Yeah, that is true because they throw a lot of balls in the air. We have a chance to get our hands on a lot of them so we are just going to try to make sure that our coverages are tight this week."
JH: They do run a lot of offense don't they with different formations?
RS: "It is crazy all the stuff they do. I didn't really know until they showed us on film that they run a lot of empty (sets). They don't even have any running backs in the backfield sometimes, so we are going to be covering all their skill players. We just have to hope that our D-line and everybody can get the pressure and we can some picks and stuff."
JH: Aren't their tight ends some of their featured receivers?
RS: "Yes, they are. They are big 6-foot-6 tight ends so we have to be physical with those guys and not just let them get open. We need to check them before they get going."
JH: When a team lines up with three tight ends, how much pressure does that put on the safeties?
RS: "It is depending on what they are doing. Filling gaps is always tough, but when they are running down the field we have to make sure we are covering them. We just have to get into the passing lane with the quarterback."
JH: In today's game, aren't the tight ends running post patterns and trying to beat you deep?
RS: "Yeah, they are starting to open up and run deep routes now. We have to cover tight ends tighter because they are taller. They are going to be physical, but we need to match their phyisical play and push them back."
JH: What is your take on their quarterback — Chase Daniels?
RS: "I have seen him play a couple of times and I think he is a good quarterback. He has a good arm and he knows the offense. He is good for that offense and he knows how to run it well."
Smith's leg injury improving daily
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