Antonio Smith was so excited about rejoining the Houston Texans after a three-game suspension that he woke up early Tuesday hoping to meet the team buses when they arrived from the airport from their season opener at San Diego.
Rain and rush hour traffic delayed his trip from the suburbs and he missed their arrival.
That was OK, though. It gave the gregarious defensive end a chance to surprise his teammates in the locker room.
''It was kind of funny,'' he said. ''I just popped up on them. They were like: `Oh, Tone, man we missed you.' It made me feel warm in my heart.''
Smith was suspended for hitting Miami guard Richie Incognito with the Dolphins player's helmet in a preseason game. He was docked about $354,000 for the incident, and says something like that won't happen again.
''That will be changed,'' he said. ''That has to be changed. I can't let him or anyone else get in my head.''
He also recounted a letter he received from the league when it denied his appeal that includ...