ATLANTA -- It hasn't been flashy, but second-year running back Ito Smith has had a heck of a preseason for the Falcons.
That continued in the first half on Thursday night against the New York Jets. Smith played much of the first half for Atlanta, and he was effective as both a runner and a receiver. The most notable play of the game for Smith was a 28-yard catch on a wheel route out of the backfield, and he then scored the first touchdown of the game for Atlanta on a 4-yard run just before halftime.
"He just has a knack, even though he's not a bigger guy, inside of the tackles," Falcons coach Dan Quinn said after the game. "It's making a guy miss, change of direction. I think that's what makes him so unique, it's his change of direction and he can really put his foot in the ground and violently explode to one side."
Smith finished the game with 13 rushing yards on five carries and added another 45 yards on three receptions. He was the team's No. 2 running back for much of the 2018 season after Devonta Freeman missed much of the year due to injuries. Smith carried the ball 90 times for 315 yards and four touchdowns during his rookie season and also caught 27 passes for an additional 152 yards.
Coming off a notable performance in Thursday's exhibition game against the New York Jets. Here are a few snapshots of Falcons running back Ito Smith