Retired NFL receiver Steve Smith Sr. briefly returned to his high school job at Taco Bell. Only this time, instead of crafting burritos and handing out crunchwraps, the former Carolina Panther and Baltimore Raven surprised fans at a Charlotte, North Carolina, drive-thru.
As a high school employee, Smith admits that his manager could have described him as “a handful” due to his being easily distracted by the cute girls and celebrities that would breeze through the Los Angeles drive-thru where he worked.
But his experiences working at the fast-food joint really prepared him for life in the NFL.
“The drive-thru at rush hour is really just like a two-minute drill,” Smith told For The Win. “You’re going to make some mistakes. You’re going to mis-hear the order, or mis-hear the play, and you’ve just got to shake it off, man. You’ve got to get to the next customer or get to the next play.”
Smith also recalls messing around in the kitchen, experimenting with the Taco Bell menu. “Taco Salad, Mexican Pizza, Chicken and Steak Quesadilla,” he remembered. “You just add things on to the menu that, as a customer, you wouldn’t pay for because it’d cost too much. Nachos BellGrande, double meat, that’s about a $7 Nacho BellGrande, you know?”
He noted that a bean burrito with no onions is one of his favorite menu items. He counts his favorite work memory as the time Sugar Ray Leonard came to the drive-thru. “It was like, ‘Hey, that’s Sugar Ray Leonard!’”
The former Taco Bell employee and NFL star will likely remember his time punching in numbers at Taco Bell when he tackles his new role as an NFL analyst on the NFL Network’s NFL Game Day Morning.
Hungry for Taco Bell now? Check out Taco Bell’s new pop-up arcade in Seattle.