Ito Smith‘s Vikings stay will end up being short. Five days after signing the young running back, the Vikings waived him. They also waived offensive lineman Cohl Cabral and defensive tackle Zeandae Johnson.
This marks the third time a team has cut Smith this year. The Falcons waived him in April, and the Cardinals moved on from the fourth-year back earlier this month. Smith spent barely a week in Arizona. These quick exits do not bode well for the former Atlanta rotational back to land out a meaningful role in 2021. Though, teams’ backfields often change due to injury, opening the door to street free agent ball carriers.
A fourth-round pick in 2018, Smith has averaged north of 4.3 yards per carry in each of the past two seasons. He totaled 268 rushing yards on 63 attempts last year, splitting time with Todd Gurley and Brian Hill. Of the Falcons’ top three 2020 backs, only Hill has a gig (with the Titans) presently.
Teams have until 3pm Tuesday to cut their rosters from 80 to 53 players. Many of the players waived next week will be candidates to land practice squad jobs, with the NFL greenlighting a second season of 16-man P-squads. Players waived early, however, obviously stand to have less of a chance to stick around in that regard.