We're in a stretch of the offseason made rich by the sheer number of project players and castoffs -- especially quarterbacks -- looking for new life in the NFL.
Case in point: Troy Smith. The 2006 Heisman Trophy winner hasn't played in the NFL since 2010, but he's hoping to catch on with the Pittsburgh Steelers, where he'll need to outduel veterans Byron Leftwich and Charlie Batch. (Anyone who read our love letter to NFL backups knows that toppling Batch won't come easy.)
Um-hmm. Moving through the AFC North (and making matters somewhat complex on the home front), Smith's family is littered with Cleveland Browns fans. The former Ohio State star grew up rooting for Pittsburgh's age-old rivals, but promises there won't be a conflict playing for the Steelers. Besides, Cleveland never picked up the phone. Pittsburgh did.
Upshot: We're hearing a fair amount of colorful conversation from a quarterback, who spent last season with the Omaha Nighthawks of the UFL. Here in May, that's not unusual. We'll be more surprised if Smith is in the conversation come September.