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Talkin' With Taj

Taj Smith and I have been friends for almost two years now. Okay, let me revise that...Taj Smith and I have been Facebook Friends for almost two years now. As any Facebook user can tell you, that doesn't actually mean a whole hell of a lot. Looking down my list of Facebook Friends I'd say about 2/3 of them are people I've spoken less than five sentences with over the last year. Ah, social networking!

Taj Smith is far and away my most active Facebook Friend. There has not been a day in the last year and a half that I haven't logged on and Taj Smith's name hasn't been waiting for me in my NewsFeed. If he hasn't joined a new group, then he's friended someone new. If that's not it, it's an event he's hosting or attending. Or some new photos he's posted. I'm saying that he's post a lot of stuff, okay?

I decided that enough had been enough and it was time to reach out to my longtime Facebook Friend. There's quite a bit going on in his life (on Facebook and in real life) so I asked him if he'd be up to answer a few questions Cuse fans are wondering. His response?
"Yeah Y Not." With that enthusiasm in mind, I sent them over via a Facebook message. For the record, Taj sent me back the answers in about 12 hours. Facebook waits for no man, least not Taj Smith:

First things first, congrats on joining the Colts on their practice squad. What does it mean to you to be a part of an NFL organization?

First, I would like to take this opportunity to Thank God for the things he put me through, and how he help me through my life
"Just Truly Blessed". Also thank the Indianapolis Colts for allowing me to be a member of their organization. It means a lot to me to be a part of the Indianapolis Colts because I get a chance to help out on the team, and at the same time showcase my talents as well.

What kind of benefits come with being a member of the practice squad other than the obvious chance to practice with the team?

Well I think the benefits that come with being on the practice squad is that you get a chance to get better and go up against some of the best in the league and on the team. It also lets coach evaluated one's performance so that they can see how well you work against the starters. You also play both ways, offense and defense.

Do you get to work with fellow WR and SU alum Marvin Harrison and if so what are you learning from him?

Yes, it's pretty good know you got someone that is willing to help you out, especially if its one of your own ( like a Syracuse Guy) and a future Hall of Famer. I’m learning how to doing things the right way such as practicing full speed, being coachable, running good routes, learning defenses, and catching the Ball with consistency. This is what I get out of what I see Marvin and Reggie Wayne do.

Looking back, how do you feel about your experiences in Green Bay in the preseason?

First, I want to Thank the Green Bay Packers Organization for giving me the opportunity and I wish them all the best this season. I feel like I have learned a lot for my experience at Green Bay and that I know what I got to do to be a better Receiver and team player. I liked Green Bay, they helped me out a lot and the people was nice. Coaches and players as well. I felt I had a good camp just did not do enough to open eyes. Now I know what I have to do to stay on a team but nothing is ever promised. I just got to keep working hard and putting GOD first.

Had you stayed at SU you'd be the #1 receiver on the team right now. Any regrets about leaving early?

I would not say the number one guy because we have good receivers but I don’t have any regrets about nothing because I enjoyed my time at Syracuse. Despite what everyone said about me leaving early and me not having a good chance at being in the NFL. I just felt like moving on in my life, going for something I always wanted to do, and that’s what I promise myself I would do no matter what people said I would do. They just helped to give me a extra burst. So Thanks.

You probably didn't realize this until I emailed you but we're Facebook Friends. And I have to say you are one of the most active people I know on the site. Not a day goes by that Taj Smith doesn't show up on my Newsfeed for something. How important is the site for you and what do you like most about it?

(Laughing) Its important to me because I get to stay in touch with some of my friend like I said I would. It just shows that I’m keeping my word to them because I do not want to give my number to everyone it just another way for me to communicate with them. Showing some love (Laugh) and let them know what I’m doing. What I like most about facebook is poking people (Just playing), I like when I get feedback on pictures and my Wall.

I'm sure you have a lot of Facebook Friends who, like me, friended you because we're Syracuse football fans. Does that make you think twice about what you post on the site and the access it provides to some fans?

A lot of [fans] friend me (Laughing). I got a few but yeah you always want to watch what you put on your page because you want to be a good role model and give a person a good impression on what type of person you are. So I think that’s important.

Finally, what advice have you given or would you give to the Syracuse football team for the rest of the season?

I would tell them to persevere and see it through no matter what people say, they do not know how hard you all worked to get where you all are at. Sometimes God make things the way they are for a reason. Just do your job and trust that the man next to you will do his and go out there and give your all because at the end of the day if you grade yourself and its more positives than negatives then you know that [you] did your job. Just make sure everybody on the same page and keep pushing to get better. Never be satisfied.

Huge thanks to Taj for taking the time and good luck with the Colts and whatever the future holds. Cuse fans will always be keeping an eye on things, be they career highlights or Facebook news items.

Oh and it was his birthday yesterday so, Happy B-Day. Thanks for the heads-up, Facebook.