Villa have been on a woeful run of form and rightly sit at the foot of the Premier League table.
But Smith feels the squad deserve some plaudits for how they responded at Villa Park at the weekend.
The former Arsenal striker told Sky Sports: "I don't want to kick a team while they're down. It was men against boys in the first half and when Harry Kane scored Spurs could have had plenty more.
"Villa couldn't cope with Spurs' pace and intensity but, to their credit, they kept going and should have found the net through Rudy Gestede and Joleon Lescott. Villa are virtually relegated so it's not easy for them, so at least they didn't give up and showed a bit of heart."
Aston Villa fans may disagree, however. The fact you can more or less predict a defeat at Villa Park says it all about the players.
Perhaps the Villa team did show some heart after going 2-0 down. But, if that's the standard paying fans have to settle for nowadays - players being praised for only losing by two goals - professional footballers are reaching unacceptable levels of over-security.
Aston Villa travel to Swansea City in their next Premier League game on Saturday evening.