The Ravens got, in Steve Smith Sr., the rare veteran FA with wisdom and ability

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We watched Steve Smith Sr. lead by example on the field throughout OTAs and training camp. That was expected. Fast forward to the preseason: Even though he might have been dissatisfied with his performance in the first two preseason games, can he really beat himself up about that?

The Ravens’ starting offense hardly had enough drives to garner much individual critiquing. But then again, isn’t that another reason for Baltimore to love a player like Smith Sr.?

He’s a true competitor.

Any veteran who is overly critical of themselves in a preseason game — where they didn’t even play more than a quarter — is special. That’s been Steve Smith’s M.O. way before he added the Sr.

Hopefully he was able to pat himself on the back after a great performance in the Ravens’ third preseason game. Smith brought down six catches for 80 yards and a score. He left the hordes of fans wanting more and definitely left them with the impression that there’s┬ámuch more to come from this season.

In the past, we’ve seen storied NFL veterans switch teams only to be let down by father time, not able to maintain that same level of elite play. Former NFL quarterback Donovan McNabb is a prime example of this. He was the man as a Philadelphia Eagle, but once moving to Washington (and later Minnesota), he just wasn’t the same guy.

It takes a special type of veteran to remain at the top of his game into the age-35 season. Is it possible that Steve Smith is that veteran? It certainly appears so.

He’s made himself right at home in Baltimore, fitting in greatly with the other guys gaining their respect the moment he walked in the door. He’s working extremely hard in practices and setting a prime example for the up-and-coming receivers on the Ravens.

Is it possible that he was the perfect pick up for the Baltimore Ravens’ offense this season? Maybe, but only time will tell.

So far, father time is saying he’s not quite finished with Steve Smith Sr., as he dons the purple and black.