4:00pm: The Saints signed Smith following his workout today, according to Schultz (on Twitter).
It’s been a quiet offseason for Smith, with his Raiders visit marking his first reported workout. Despite getting into 23 games over the past two years, Smith had to settle for practice squad gigs during the 2021 regular season and 2022 offseason. If he does find a landing spot this month, he’ll probably be inking another non-guaranteed pact.
The former second-round pick was a Pro Bowler during his time with the Cowboys, with the linebacker averaging 139 tackles per season between 2018 and 2020. He underwent wrist surgery during the 2021 offseason, and after refusing to waive his 2022 injury guaranteed (while also getting lapped by Micah Parsons and Keanu Neal on the depth chart), Smith was cut by Dallas.
After catching on with the Giants at the end of the 2021 campaign, he re-joined their practice squad last September. He ended up seeing time in 13 games (11 starts) during the 2022 season, collecting 88 tackles and one sack. Pro Football Focus only ranked him 60th among 81 qualifying linebackers, although they did grade him as one of the best pass-rushing options at his position.
Earlier this week, Saints head coach Dennis Allen hinted that the team could be looking for some depth at off-ball linebacker. Demario Davis had been sidelined with a calf injury, leaving 2022 fifth-round pick D’Marco Jackson as the primary option at the position.