Smith was a standout for Statesville High School before graduating and attending East Carolina University. Undrafted, Smith started out with the Atlanta Falcons in 1988, and played with the Pittsburgh Steelers before landing with the Dallas Cowboys in 1990. A special teams star, Smith replaced an injured Ken Norton, Jr., in the playoffs and won game MVP honors against the Falcons on the trail towards the Cowboys' Super Bowl victory in 1992. He would not enjoy two more rings as the other Cowboy players of that era did because he joined defensive coordinator Dave Wannstedt with the Chicago Bears after the glorious '92 season.
Smith has held many football training camps for the youth of Iredell County, North Carolina. Currently, Smith owns his own business JPC Bail Bonds and is the head football coach of Piedmont Christian Paladins in Statesville.