Putting the Packers on the map

Published 12:00 am Friday, September 28, 2007

SMITHFIELD—Allen Iverson, Alonzo Mourning, Bruce Smith, David Wright. These are some of the great athletes that have graced southeastern Virginia with their incredible athletic talents. Some sports fans take the ability of these special talents for granted and they don’t take the time to go watch these athletes play in person.

Well, here’s some free advice —don’t miss

the opportunity to see tailback Dyrell Roberts, who’s playing his senior year for the Smithfield Packers. The Packers host Poquoson Friday night. Roberts is a rare talent, who can dominate a game on offense, defense, and special teams and he is a threat to reach the end zone every time he touches the ball. He’s helped put Smithfield back on the football map with two state playoff appearances and 16 wins in two years.

Last year, Roberts had his worst rushing performance against Tabb, but the Packers were able to pull out a 27-20 overtime win.

An early season loss to defending Bay Rivers district champions Lafayette, put Smithfield behind the pack, so very game from here on takes added importance.

Roberts says the team must be focused for all of Smithfield’s opponents — not just the top teams.

“Each week for us is a playoff week,” Dyrell said. “For

us to get in the playoffs, we have to continue to win out. We can’t let

anybody get in our way… we just have to win each game.”

Dyrell followed up his 1166 yards, 18 touchdowns, and 10 interceptions as a

sophomore, with 1200 yards from scrimmage as a junior. In the process, he

earned first team All-Region at running back and second team All-State at

cornerback. What makes Roberts an even better player this year than he has

been in the past is maturity said Smithfield head coach Chris Fraser.

“Dyrell works a lot harder in practice than he use too, and that’s due to

maturity. He sees that putting in the hard work at practice makes it easier

(to play) during the game.”

Roberts must have practiced extremely hard t before Smithfield played

Jamestown last Friday. He accounted for seven, yes seven touchdowns in

Smithfield’s 46-28 win over the Eagles. With 551 yards and 12 touchdowns

thus far, Roberts is on pace for 1800 yards and 40 touchdowns on the season.

Roberts is the highest rated Bay Rivers recruit since former Virginia Tech

quarterback Bryan Randall, who starred for Bruton in the early part of the

decade. Randall went to win ACC Player of the year honors in 2004. “We will

give you a chance to play quickly and make an impact for this program,”

Virginia Tech head coach Frank Beamer told Roberts. “You’re a good one for

us, I promise you.”

With such high praise, it’s no wonder Dyrell has affected the

Smithfield/Isle of Wight community with more than just his football skills.

He’s a star that illuminates every person he comes in contact with. “As a

person, he’s as good a kid as you’ll find in a high school football

program,” Fraser said. “When you get to see a kid like Dyrell speak, just

his politeness and manners. People get to see that we’re not just a little

country school…we have very intelligent hard working kids.”

Don’t miss your opportunity to see Dyrell perform on the football field–you

might regret it later.