After a groin injury made him miss most of last season, Daryl Smith, departing the Jacksonville Jaguars, isn’t seeing a lot of interest around the NFL in this free agency period, but recently was picked up by the radar of the St. Louis Rams, in need of a veteran linebacker who is quite productive and varied in the positions he can play in, something Smith fits the description of when healthy.
Smith, drafted by the Jags in 2004, has been quite productive in the last few years prior to his injury-riddled 2012, making two Pro Football Focus All-Pro teams, in 2009 and 2011. He recorded 311 tackles between 2009 and 2011 and has the ability to play in both the 3-4 and 4-3 defense, although he’s better as someone who needs to stop the run instead of pass-rushing duties, showing a good set of hands as well most of the time with 6 career interceptions and 39 deflected passes.
The Rams have been busy earlier in free agency with some impressive signings, but probably overpaying a bit to land players like Jake Long (getting $8.5 million a season) and Jared Cook, hoping the tight end can replace Danny Amendola and Brandon Gibson who left the team to the Patriots and Miami Dolphins respectively.
Smith, who has played his entire career with the Jaguars, is hoping he can get a deal done with the Rams, probably not too choosy about the contract they’re going to give him, not having too many offers out there at the moment, and maybe none other at all.