Cards: Pro Set 1990 PB, Score 1990, Topps 1989
Acquired: Canton Acquisition 2012
Doug Smith played for the Los Angeles Rams from 1978 through the 1991 season. Originally a free agent signee from Bowling Green University, Smith was signed as an afterthought as the Rams already had veteran Rich Saul and 3rd round pick Leon White in camp, but as they say, “The rest is history”. After a major knee injury while he was playing guard in 1979 almost ended his career, Doug rebounded, after he had a spiritual awakening, and returned to take the starting center job in 1980. A quiet, ‘in the trenches’ technician with a great motor, Smith was one of the most unheralded and underrated centers in the game. Doug had great quickness and explosiveness off the line for his size (6’3″, 260), and was a formidable pass blocker with great range across the pocket. He along with Jackie Slater and Kent Hill anchored down some impressive lines for the Rams, and blocked for the team through the Eric Dickerson era and on into the Jim Everett era. With the consistency and excellence the Rams had at the position, this allowed them to transition offensively from a run oriented system to a more vertical attack seamlessly, and compete against their foes in the playoffs. Doug also was an offensive captain and called OL plays at the line of scrimmage for the Rams. Over his career Smith played every position along the line for the team, with the exception of left tackle. Smith went to 6 consecutive Pro Bowls over his career for the Rams, from 1984-1989. He’d also be inducted into Bowling Green’s Athletic Hall of Fame in 1986. In 2001, his fellow teammate Jackie Slater was inducted into the Hall of Fame where in his induction speech Jackie attributed much of his success to Doug’s unwavering faith and commitment to Jesus Christ to do your best each and every day.