We're talking about the then-New York Giants wide receiver who, in his second season, busted out in a big way with a franchise-record 107 receptions for 1,220 yards and seven touchdowns.
Fast forward to 2012: The St. Louis Rams believe they did themselves some good in rolling the dice on Smith, who had microfracture knee surgery, a failed move to Philadelphia and a second trip to injured reserve.
"First off, he's a very first-class young man," Rams coach Jeff Fisher said in Sunday's edition of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. "Overcame a difficult situation with his knee. The guy had an extraordinary workout and has a chance to get back where he was in 2009."
Not that Fisher is biased or anything (OK, maybe he is just a little).
"In addition to that he went to my high school (Taft in Woodland Hills, Calif.) and went to USC, so that gives him a chance," Fisher said. "I just thought I'd throw that out there."
Certainly, the Rams have taken a minor risk by signing Smith to a one-year deal worth $1 million in base salary. So if Smith can actually return to his '09 form, it ought to do wonders for the offense.