JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) — Jacksonville Jaguars cornerback Jalen Ramsey expects an earful Sunday, a steady stream of smack talk from Baltimore Ravens receiver Steve Smith.
The rookie insists he’s ready.
“Everybody knows he’s a trash-talker,” Ramsey said. “He’s gotten into DB’s heads in the past. But you can’t get in my head. I’m going to play football.”
Easier said than done against Smith, a 37-year-old veteran who’s been running his mouth — and backing it up — for 16 NFL seasons. Smith has 969 receptions for 14,015 yards and 76 touchdowns, and is widely considered one of the league’s all-time entertainers and a walking sound bite.
Asked whether he’s toned down his act with age, Smith said he’s as insulting now as ever before.
“I’m still a dirtbag, so, no, that has not changed one bit,” he said.
Ramsey could be his top target when the Jaguars (0-2) host the Ravens (2-0) on Sunday. The fifth overall pick in the NFL draft who won a national championship at Florida State, Ramsey has no shortage of confidence. He basically dared Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers to throw his way before the season opener and welcomed Smith’s antics.
“That’s cool. We’ll see,” Ramsey said.
This much is certain: the game will pit the NFL’s oldest receiver against the league’s youngest starting cornerback.
“Age doesn’t matter,” the 21-year-old Ramsey said. “He definitely still has juice in him, can make some big plays for them. He’s had a pretty good year so far. I look forward to it.”
Smith probably does, too, especially knowing he has a chance to try some old tricks on a newcomer.
“I don’t really pay attention to how well I’m in a guy’s head,” Smith said. “If I feel like saying something, I’ll say something. I was talking to a guy last week and I said something, and then after the game, it was all squashed and then we moved on.”
Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.