Prior to the draft, there was an effort by New Orleans Saints' head coachMike Ditka and management to get the Cincinnati Bengals' high draft position so the Saints could get Ricky Williams. The final offer, which was refused by Bengals management, was for nine draft picks, several extra in that year as well as many the next year. Instead of taking the trade, the Bengals stayed with their initial decision to draft Smith, who, while athletic, (he had also played two years of minor-league baseball and ran a 4.66 40-yard dash) was still largely unproven, having only succeeded at the college level for one season.
Smith missed large periods of 1999training camp due to contract disputes; many pundits[who?] later speculated that his absence from this part of training camp hurt him in the seasons to come. Despite showing athleticism in his early games, he failed to grasp the Bengals playbook fully, and never established himself with the team. During the four years he was with the Bengals, he would start in only 17 games and throw just five TD passes next to 13 interceptions, eventually leading to his release in 2002, after riding the bench mostly during the previous two years.
Green Bay Packers/Tampa Bay Buccaneers/Frankfurt Galaxy
In his first regular season action, replacing Burris in the second quarter on July 12, Smith struggled against the Toronto Argonauts. He finished 6-of-10 for 63 yards, no touchdowns and three interceptions. He also lost one fumble. He was then pulled at the end of the half.
After an unimpressive showing against the Roughriders on October 8, 2007, going 4-of-12, for 37 yards, along with the impending return of a healthy Burris, the Stampeders released Smith on October 10, 2007.
In March 2010 Smith joined the University of California's football staff as a graduate assistant to work with the offense. Cal head coach Jeff Tedford previously coached Smith at Oregon when he was offensive coordinator.