Broncos Sign LB Andre Smith

Andre Smith has established a steady career as a special-teamer, moving around the country as a backup linebacker who primarily contributes on fourth downs and kickoffs. The veteran found another gig Thursday.

A day after the Broncos concluded their minicamp, they reached an agreement to add Smith. The team announced the signing, and Smith will replace tight end Dylan Leonard on the team’s roster. The Broncos, whom 9News’ Mike Klis notes auditioned Smith at minicamp this week, waived Leonard with an injury settlement.

Smith, 27, joins the Broncos after a year with the Falcons. Denver will be Smith’s fourth NFL destination in four seasons and fifth team overall. A former Panthers seventh-round pick, Smith became one of many in the Carolina-to-Buffalo pipeline in recent years by being traded to the Bills in 2020. After two years in Buffalo, Smith stopped through Tennessee in 2022.

With the Falcons last season, Smith played 11 games and made his first career start at linebacker. While the former Carolina draftee logged a career-high 112 defensive snaps in 2023, the bulk of his work still came on special teams. Smith played 211 ST snaps, marking the fourth time during his career he has surpassed 200 plays in that phase.

The Broncos lost six-year linebacker Josey Jewell to the Panthers in free agency but signed Cody Barton as an option alongside Alex Singleton. The team also extended backup and special-teamer Jonas Griffith in February but lost hybrid LB Drew Sanders to an offseason Achilles tear. A 2023 third-round pick, Sanders was on the field for 297 special teams plays as a rookie.

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