OWINGS MILLS, Md. — Pro Bowl middle linebacker Roquan Smith is set to stay the focal point of the Baltimore Ravens’ defense beyond half a season.
Smith reached a contract on a five-year extension on Tuesday, a group source validated. The NFL Network is reporting the offer deserves $100 million, which would make him the highest-paid inside linebacker in the league at $20 million per season.
The extension with Smith not just will keep Baltimore’s leading protective gamer from ending up being a complimentary representative in 2 months; it will maximize the Ravens to utilize the franchise tag on quarterback Lamar Jackson, who is ending up out the fifth-year alternative on his novice agreement.
Smith, 25, measured up to expectations considering that the Ravens obtained him in October from the Chicago Bears for 2nd- and fifth-round choices in the 2023 NFL draft. A leader and tone-setter, Smith completed as the NFL’s third-leading tackler this season (169) for a Baltimore defense that enabled the third-fewest points (18.5), and he was called to the very first Pro Bowl of his profession.
“He wants to do the things that are required to be a great player and to be a great unit and then to impact your team,” Ravens coach John Harbaugh stated of Smith on Monday. “That’s what he’s all about — 100 percent — [and] that’s what I love about him. He’s one of the top guys I’ve ever seen that way, and I think that does always impact everybody as a leader, for sure.”
Smith has actually been the most impactful gamer in the 2nd half of the season for Baltimore. In the Ravens’ very first 8 video games without Smith, the defense ranked 20th in points enabled (22.9) and 24th in lawns quit (364.3). In Baltimore’s 9 video games with Smith, the defense enabled the NFL’s second-fewest points (14.7) and held groups to the third-fewest lawns (288.8).
He is the very first gamer considering that Hall of Fame linebacker Ray Lewis to tape-record a minimum of 100 deals with, numerous sacks and one interception in each of the very first 5 years of a profession.
Jackson responded to Smith’s contract on Twitter:
Unc you simply snapped💰🚀
— Lamar Jackson (@Lj_era8) January 10, 2023