Steve Smith's different take on being a mentor to Ravens receivers

Baltimore Ravens wide receiver Steve Smith was asked how it feels when so many of the younger teammates like undrafted rookie DeAndre Carter look up to him.

"He was probably looking at the same height," Smith said of the 5-foot-8 Carter before breaking into a smile.

Joking aside, Smith is the sage leader of one of the youngest receiver groups in Ravens history. At 36, Smith is at least 10 years older than any other Baltimore receiver. When Smith broke into the NFL in 2001, first-round pick Breshad Perriman was 8 years old.

Smith, though, doesn't really embrace the role of a mentor because he doesn't believe he knows everything about being a receiver.

"I feel like I can learn something from them just like they feel like they can learn something from me," Smith said. "So, I may see a guy do a release, and I’ll jot down a note for myself. And then I may see something, and I’ll tell them. I just really look at it as really two professionals evaluating each other and giving out some great input and that’s really it. [It is] less of [being a] mentor, more of just having a conversation. If you walk in there like, 'Hey, I’m the older guy ...' I just go in there [and say], 'Look, I can learn from you; you can learn from me.'"

Smith is leading by example this spring. Outside of the quarterbacks (Joe Flacco and Matt Schaub) and punter Sam Koch, Smith is the only player over the age of 30 who has been at all of the Ravens' voluntary organized team activities. He is showing his commitment to learning Marc Trestman's offense even when he isn't obligated to do so.

"To see him out here, no matter how long it is, or what it is, it’s always good," Flacco said. "It gives everybody that sense of wanting to come out here and work hard. He’s one of the guys that everybody kind of looks at and says, ‘OK, how is Steve doing on this play?’ And they feed off of that and learn how to practice. So, anytime you can get guys out here of his nature, it does things for the whole team, just because all the young guys learn from it."