Going into Thursday night's draft, now-former Alabama standout wide receiver Devonta Smith was technically a free agent waiting to be selected in the 2021 NFL Draft. Considering he was a Heisman Trophy winner and one of the most productive wide receivers in college football, Smith didn't expect to wait long before finding out where he'd continue his football playing career.
As the first-round progressed, Smith was still on the board after nine picks came and went. When the 10th pick approached, the Dallas Cowboys were on the clock. Then, they made a trade with one of their NFC East rivals, the Philadelphia Eagles. After a few minutes went by, the pick was in. With the 10th pick of the 2021 NFL Draft, the Eagles selected the Alabama product, Devonta Smith.
The city of Philadelphia got excited as their hometown football team landed one of the most electric receivers coming out of the NCAA. Philly fans got even more excited when they found out that once upon a time, Smith openly rooted for the Philadelphia 76ers during the 2017 NBA Playoffs.
On Friday morning, Smith boarded a flight from Cleveland, Ohio, the site of the NFL Draft this year, to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, his soon-to-be home. After making himself acquainted with his new team and reuniting with his quarterback Jalen Hurts, Smith and QB1 received an invite to attend the Sixers game later in the night.
Not only would Smith and Hurts sit courtside for the Sixers game, but they would also be introduced before tip-off to ring the honorary bell before the Sixers took on the Atlanta Hawks for the third time this season. With them was another Eagles standout and Super Bowl hero, Brandon Graham.
Friday night's bell-ringing for Smith could end up becoming the first of many. If the former Alabama standout performs just as he did at the NCAA level, he'll surely get a warm welcome from Sixers fans for years to come.