Guard Shelley Smith will see several familiar faces from Colorado State when he joins the Texans for OTAs on May 17.
Colorado State guard Shelley Smith joined the Texans in the sixth round (187th overall) of the 2010 NFL Draft.
Smith (6-4, 300) was a three-year starter and a captain at Colorado State. Texans coach Gary Kubiak said after the draft that he has the ability to play either guard or center in the NFL.
With organized team activities on the horizon, we caught up with Smith for a "10 Questions" interview about his thoughts on the city of Houston, his CSU-Texans ties and more.
1. Where are you these days, and what have you been doing since the draft?
"I'm in Denver right now. I've just been training and just preparing myself, making sure I'm in shape and stuff before I come up there."
2. Have you ever been to the city of Houston?
"I have. A couple years ago, we actually played at the University of Houston. It's hard to get a really good impression off of just one quick visit, a business trip that you use to play your game. But from what I've heard, I've heard it's a great city and the people are really friendly. And I know that the Texans are a very good football team and heading in a great direction."
3. The Texans' OTAs start on May 17. What's the first thing other than Reliant Stadium that you plan to check out when you get to Houston?
"The first thing I'll probably be checking out is my playbook (laughs). I'm not really sure after that."
4. Out of all the Colorado State players on the Texans, who would you say that you're closest with?
"Probably Jesse Nading. He was kind of the closest to my age group at CSU. He was up here in Colorado after the draft, actually, so I got a chance to talk to him a little bit. I'm hoping that having a few familiar faces down there will help me out with the transition."
5. Your new offensive line coach, John Benton, and offensive coordinator, Rick Dennison, are both CSU alums. How much contact have you had with them since the draft?
"I've talked to both of them a little bit. I talked to Coach Benton recently. He kind of just told me what I need to know to get prepared to come out there. And I've talked with Coach (Marc) Lubick, of course. He's a great guy."
6. Gary Kubiak said after the draft that you could play at guard or center. What role do you expect to have with the team?
"Basically, I'm just going in with the mindset that I'm going to do whatever it takes to help the team win. Whatever role that'll be, I'll be happy with it. I just want to do my best to help the team win however I can."
7. Do you have any superstitions or gameday rituals?
"You know what, I don't. I just like to visualize what I need to do out there on the field, and that's about it for me. I don't really have any rituals or things like that in particular."
8. What was your favorite moment at Colorado State?
"Probably the bowl game win over Fresno State in the New Mexico Bowl (2008). I remember how determined we were as a team and just really wanted it. And I remember our running back's (Gartrell Johnson) performance was amazing. I think he had a bowl record for the number of yards he had (375 rushing/receiving), so it was a lot of fun. As an offensive line, we took a lot of pride in it."
9. What do you watch on TV?
"Probably my favorite TV shows are the 'Fresh Prince of Bel-Air' and 'Law and Order: Special Victims Unit.'"
10. What would you be doing if you weren't about to go into the NFL?
"I'd probably be going back to school to finish up my nutrition degree and probably get into the field of nutrition in some way. It's something I take really seriously. You've got to take care of your body; you only get one."
Follow Nick Scurfield on Twitter at ****twitter.com/NickScurfield*** or find him on the "I'm A Texan Club" at ***imatexan.com/profiles/Nick_Scurf/***.*