Whitburn, Tyneside born inside right Jack Smith played for Whitburn in 1913, Marsden Rescue in 1914 and North Shields Athletic in 1918 but after the end of the First World War joined Second Division club South Shields for £5 in September 1919, making his Football League debut at Tottenham Hotspur the same month. He soon became a regular scorer for South Shields and over the next nine seasons, he was an ever present during their 1925-26 campaign scoring 20 goals and missed only one match in 1926-27 when he scored 18 times, including a hat-trick in a win over Notts County in August 1926.
Smith was signed by First Division club Portsmouth on 31st December 1927 having scored 90 goals in 278 appearances for South Shields. In his first full season with Pompey they reached the 1929 FA Cup Final but were beaten 2-0 by Blackburn Rovers at Wembley. He was first called into the England squad in November 1930 but was a non playing reserve against Wales. His first cap came in October 1931 at Windsor Park, Belfast, scoring in a 6-2 victory over Ireland. He then scored again a month later in a 3-1 victory over Wales at Anfield and scored twice a month thereafter in a 7-1 victory over Spain at Highbury, which proved his final England international. He also twice represented The Football League.
He eventually became club captain of Portsmouth and was back at Wembley for the 1934 FA Cup Final but Portsmouth were again beaten, this time by two late Fred Tilson goals for Manchester City. Having missed very few matches since his arrival at Fratton Park he eventually lost his place in February 1935 and joined Bournemouth & Boscombe Athletic in May 1935 after 69 goals in 299 appearances for Portsmouth, scoring twice in 46 appearances before joining Clapton Orient at the end of October 1936. He made only 7 appearances at Lea Bridge and retired when he was released from his contract by Clapton Orient in February 1937.
One of a famous family of five footballing brothers, the others being Leicester City stalwart Sep Smith, Tom played for South Shields and later played for Manchester United and Northampton Town, and WH “Billy” Smith also played for South Shields and Portsmouth and the two played together in the 1934 Cup Final.. Finally Joe played reserve team football for Leicester and later played for Watford.