Malcolm Smith, 24, was named MVP in Super Bowl XLVIII. The linebacker silenced the Broncos offense with a commanding display. He was a college star at USC and has been with Seattle since 2011. During the Super Bowl, Smith intercepted a Peyton Manning pass to return it for 69 years to score a touchdown making it 22-0. He also recovered a fumble from Demaryius Thomas. At the conclusion of the game, Smith was awarded a Chevy pick-up truck.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. Smith Suffered From a Rare Disease
He suffers from a rare condition known as a achalasia. An illness with makes it hard for him to digest food as it frequently gets stuck in his esophagus. According to reports, Smith first noticed the condition when he was in 2009 when he was in college and preparing for the Rose Bowl. He has said that he realized he was losing weight and throwing up more frequently. The Seahawks star was initially wrongfully diagnosed with acid reflux. After surgery, he is able to control achalasia but is still required to eat slowly.
2. Football in his Family
His brother, Steve, played for the Giants, Eagles and Rams in the NFL. As well as that, Steve Smith, like Malcolm, was a star at USC.
3. He Scored 15 Touchdowns in His High School Senior Year
He attended Taft High School in Woodland Hills, California. In his senior year, despite carrying a leg injury, Smith had 31 tackles, 10 sacks and four fumble recoveries. Not to mention the 15 touchdowns.
4. One of his College Teammates Called Him the ‘Most Aggressive Player on Defense’
Smith, during his time in college, was awarded the “Legend Nike Game Ball” for his performance against UCS rival UCLA in 2009. During the 28-7 win, Smith returned the first Bruins interception 62 yards for a touchdown in the first quarter. Taylor Mays, now of the Panthers, said Smith was “one of our most agressive players on defense.”
5. He Was the Other Seahawk Involved in THAT Sherman Incident
In 2011, he entered the NFL draft where he was selected by the Seahawks. He first gained national attention during the 2013 NFC Championship game between the Seahawks and the 49ers. In the final play of the game, Smith made the interception after it was tipped to him by team mate Richard Sherman.