The Baltimore Ravens have been looking for answers at the inside linebacker position since Ray Lewis retired after the Super Bowl. Rolando McClain retiring in May after spending just one month with the franchise didn’t help matters either. Daryl Smith is the latest transaction to enter the equation according to Aaron Wilson of the baltimoresun.
Smith agreed to a one-year deal, but the linebacker is expected to start next to second round draft pick Arthur Brown, who is recovering from sports hernia surgery in early May. To get a deal done like this for a quality player in Smith is such a classic move by the Ravens. The team like to wait in free agency and let the market set itself. Smith. A veteran with the Jacksonville Jaguars for nine years, Smith has a total of 638 tackles, 21.5 sacks, and six interceptions in his career.
Smith missed the first 14 games of the 2012 regular season due to a groin injury, and was activated as a starter for the final two games of the season. Whatever way you look at it, Smith is actually an upgrade over McClain. Yes, McClain is eight years younger than Smith who just turned 31 in May, but Smith has been a leader on a Jaguars defense that while hasn’t been elite, has caused some problems at times for opponents over the years.
The signing of Smith looks like the final piece to the Ravens front seven puzzle that is looking to improve from their 17thranked defense last season while allowing 21.5 points per game. The team is looking to be faster on defense and get back to the reputation they have been known for as a suffocating unit.