OWINGS MILLS, Md. -- Baltimore Ravens wide receiver Torrey Smith has already produced career highs in catches (54) and receiving yards (952), and there's still four games to play. What's next for Smith is the Ravens' single-season receiving mark.
With 250 more receiving yards, Smith would set a new Ravens record, surpassing Michael Jackson's 1,201 yards in 1996.
I have no doubt that Smith is going to accomplish this, and it goes beyond the fact that he only needs to average 62.5 yards over the final four weeks to do so. It's more about Smith's attitude.
"I should have already had [the record], so I’m not satisfied," Smith said. "I’ve got to play better. Just like last game, there are three plays still in my mind that I should have made. That’s what I really focus on – being the best player that I can be for our team. If it comes with putting up numbers and our franchise’s records, that’s cool. But at the end of the day, it’s all about winning.”
Smith ranked among the best wide receivers in the NFL earlier this season. He was the only player to record at least 85 yards receiving per game over the first five weeks, and he had the third-most receiving yards during that span.
But his production has cooled over the past two months. Smith has eclipsed 85 yards receiving just once in his past seven games.
While he's not putting up the big receiving numbers lately, he has improved in the red zone. Smith has caught a touchdown pass in three of his past four games.
“It’s not like [we’re] out there running new plays or anything," Smith said. "We just run the offense, and I’m a small piece of it – just like everyone else. I’m just happy to get into the end zone. I can name off countless times where I’ve been tackled inside the 5 or the 10, so the touchdown thing wouldn’t be an issue. You guys wouldn’t be talking about ways to get me the ball if I had made it happen."
Smith should have plenty of opportunities to fix his mistakes Sunday, given the Minnesota Vikings' pass defense. The Vikings have surrendered the third-most passing yards (3,444) and the most touchdown passes (26) this season.