Stomping Victim Has Come A Long WayMarch 16th, 2014
Centers and guards rarely make headlines, unless they’re making ludicrous claims of poverty among active NFL players, contracting MRSA, or getting viciously stomped by angry defensive linemen.
On Friday, Tampa Bay signed Packers free agent center Evan Dietrich-Smith. He’s hardly a household name outside of cheese country. Dietrich-Smith was undrafted in 2009 and cut that year and in 2010, by the Packers and Seahawks, respectively. He returned to the Packers before the 2010 playoffs and got a Super Bowl ring, and finally earned a few starts at guard in 2011.
That’s when he got stomped by Lions manbeast defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh, an event that made widespread NFL headlines.
What was most memorable to Joe was the story that came out later via former Packer Matt Brook. It seems Dietrich-Smith was a bizarre instigator.
“One of his guards, he’s had like one or two starts in his career and he’s got to play against Suh. So he’s pretty puckered, right? So, he’s talking to James, the offensive line coach, going, ‘What do I do? What do I do?’”
“James is just in his mind going, ‘This guy is going to get killed. I got to take his mind off it, give him something else to do.’ So he says, ‘OK, every time you’re in a pile, I want you to focus on something. I want you to untie his shoes.
“‘Anytime you can, just reach in; he’s got floppy shoe laces, he doesn’t spat (cover them with tape) or anything, just untie his shoes. It will irritate him.’”
Brock said the Packers offensive lineman untied Suh’s shoes three times during the game.
“That’s why he stomped him,” Brock said. “That’s why he banged his head on the ground and he stomped him.”
Joe just wanted to share Dietrich-Smith’s big claim to fame.
He played a little center in 2012 and got the starting nod last season. Aaron Rodgers had lobbied for him then — and to keep him this offseason. But now he’s a Buccaneer.
For the record, Joe’s never read that Dietrich-Smith admitted to messing with Suh’s footwear. Regardless, Dietrich-Smith will get another crack at Suh’s shoes when the Bucs head to Detroit this season.