DITR: Peyton Smith, Louisiana

Peyton Smith plays for the Jonesboro-Hodge High Tigers in Jonesboro, La. Peyton is a class of 2023 defensive end. He is 6’4″ and weights 268 LBS. Peyton has a 2.8 GPA. Peyton has a powerful first step and strong hands. He lead the state in 2022 in tackles while also having 9 sacks. Peyton is one of the most underrated players in the 2023 class. His head coach, coach Blankenship, said to me, “he is strong and a good run defender. He will be a sleeper for someone.”

Watch Peyton’s Highlights HERE

When did you start playing? I started playing my first year in middle school in 6th grade. Jonesboro-Hodge middle school. I had seen my brothers play and I had been playing back yard football, so I wanted to play when I got to middle school.

What have you learned about yourself while playing? I have learned I am mentally tough. When I play, I never want to give up. When I get knocked down, I get back up and keep moving forward. I do everything to accomplish all I can on the football field.

What would your teachers say about you?  My teachers would say that I am really quite and don’t talk that much.

What do you love about playing football? I love to just hit people. When I was younger, I had a lot of anger issues. Since I have been playing football, I have learned to control my anger and turn it into something positive. Whenever I step on the field, I feel that this is what I am meant to do.

Who do you look up to? My dad and brothers. They are always there to motivate me when time get tough.

What motivates you? Honestly, I just want to be the best football player I can be. I know that all these workouts can help me be the best.

Are there any aspects of the game that you are working on this summer to get better for the fall? Yes, I have been working on my speed and hand placement. I have been watching a lot of my film and noticed that I didn’t have the speed or hand placement I needed. I have been running hills at 15-20 yard bursts, I have been hitting the sleds, and I have been working on my starts/stances.

What is your personal goal for this upcoming season? My personal goal is to get at least 150 tackles and at least 10 sacks.

What makes you special? I do not ever give up. I will always do more work than any other player. My sophomore year, I pulled some muscles in my back. After all the work I had put in, I was so upset that I could not play. So instead of giving up, I continued to work hard. This past year, my junior year, I lead the state in tackles with 116 with 9 sacks.

What are your hobbies? Working out, fishing, drive my motorcycle

Do you play any other sports? I used to play baseball, but I gave it up to focus on football.