Yesterday, the Baltimore Ravens sign free agent linebacker Daryl Smith (already discussed here). Since then though, some more details about Smith’s contract and some other general information has become known.
First off, is Smith’s contract. It was known yesterday that the deal was for one year, but what wasn’t known was the monetary value of the contract. Today, news came out that the deal is worth $1.125 million. This comes from a base salary of $840,000 and a signing bonus of $285,000. Another $1 million is available in playing time incentives which is considered to be reachable. This means the maximum value of the contract is $2.125 million.
Before the signing of Smith, the Ravens were $4.303 million under the salary cap. With this signing, the Ravens will be at approximately $3.583 million under the salary cap. With that cap room, they still need to sign 1st round draft pick S Matt Elam and 3rd round draft pick DT Brandon Williams. These two contracts will only take up $879,000 in cap, when the Rule of 51 is factored in. This means that the Ravens will still have about $2.3 million to spend on other free agents if they want to. Odds are they won’t use this cap room until the first cuts of training camp have occurred or if they need a replacement for an injured player.
This signing was made possible by the release of S Bernard Pollard. While this move occurred back in March, the cut was designated as a post-June 1st cut, which meant that the Ravens wouldn’t receive cap room until June 2nd, but would receive more cap room on June 2nd than if they didn’t make it a post-June 1st cut. On June 2nd, the Ravens received $2.5 million in cap room and a few days later, they signed Smith.
Another key fact about the signing of Smith is that it won’t count against the compensatory draft picks that the Ravens will receive in next year’s draft. The cut-off for free agent signings to impact these picks was June 1st. Any signings after this date, don’t impact compensatory picks. The Ravens are in line to receive four compensatory picks due to the losses of of Ed Reed, Paul Kruger, Dannell Ellerbe, and Cary Williams in free agency. Since all of the players that the Ravens signed before the June 1st deadline were cut by their previous teams, they don’t count against compensatory picks either.
In Jacksonville, Daryl Smith wore number 52. However, in Baltimore, number 52 will always belong to the now retired Ray Lewis. The number will probably be retired in a few years and in the meantime, nobody is going to get that number. This means that Smith needs a new number, and he has been assigned number 51, which was as close to 52 as Smith could get. Last season, LB Brendon Ayanbadejo wore this number.
Today, the Ravens had more OTAs and, not surprisingly, Smith wasn’t present at the practice yet but, he should be around the facility soon.
When asked about the signing of Smith, head coach John Harbaugh said “He’s always been a superb player. We think he’s going to be a great fit.”