In a shocking transfer, the Dallas Cowboys launched Jaylon Smith on Tuesday. On Wednesday, extra chaos ensued when the New England Patriots have been set to chop ties with Stephon Gilmore. The Green Bay Packers missed on Gilmore however bought a deal finished with Smith. While some are excited as a result of it’s a recognized title, it’s not the comfort prize Green Bay wanted.
Smith was a lock to go within the first spherical of the 2016 NFL Draft earlier than a ugly knee harm he sustained in his closing recreation at Notre Dame made many scouts and executives draw back. The Cowboys took him within the second spherical, and he was nice in his first two years, however his play has severely dropped off within the final couple of seasons.
Signing him sounds glamorous due to his title, particularly for Packers followers. There have lengthy been goals of discovering a long-term resolution on the inside linebacker spot, however Smith received’t be that.
Like each different staff within the NFL, Green Bay has had weak factors early within the 12 months, and so they have been exploited. However, that weak spot hasn’t been at inside linebacker. Free-agent pickup De’Vondre Campbell has been a hidden-gem acquisition for the Packers. He was picked up late within the offseason. Although he was nearly an afterthought to many, he has turned in a single constant efficiency after one other.
Campbell leads the staff in tackles by means of 4 weeks and has an interception and a fumble restoration on his resumé. And he’s been sturdy, taking part in 100% of the defensive snaps within the final three weeks. Outside of Campbell, it’s been a bit skinny at depth on the place with Krys Barnes out, however even Oren Burks has been appropriate as his alternative.
Any concepts that Smith will step proper in and tackle a outstanding position on this protection ought to be ignored. Smith hasn’t proven the aptitude to be that sort of participant anymore, despite the fact that he’s solely 26 years outdated.
Smith’s story is an unbelievable one. Many thought his profession was doomed after the leg harm at Notre Dame. He would rehab and turn into a major contributor for the Cowboys in his first couple of seasons. But the final two years have been on the other aspect of the spectrum. He has been tardy in protection, had noticeably slowed when pursuing a ball provider, and the Cowboys had much better, youthful, and cheaper choices, making the choice to chop him simpler for them.
Some level to Smith’s PFF grade (eleventh amongst all linebackers with a minimum of 100 snaps). But he’s performed tremendous sparingly for Dallas and has finished properly with a closely lowered position.
There’s an opportunity Smith might do properly with that very same gentle workload that he had in Dallas this 12 months, however inside linebacker isn’t an issue proper now. Green Bay ought to have been saving their ammunition for a transfer once they want it out of necessity, not as a result of it’s a flashy title at a spot that they’ve traditionally had hassle with.
Jaire Alexander‘s long-term status is still uncertain. If he misses any significant time, Green Bay becomes super at cornerback with Kevin King also on the shelf. That’s why Gilmore made all of the sense on this planet. The curiosity seemed to be mutual earlier than the Carolina Panthers determined they have been contenders and swooped in with the commerce to amass the previous NFL Defensive Player of the Year.
There’s a necessity at cornerback for the Packers proper now. Rasul Douglas, who was scooped up shortly after Green Bay missed out on Gilmore, isn’t going to offer these solutions.
It would’ve made far more sense for the Packers to attend after which seek for a cornerback who might turn into out there than it might be to clog up a roster spot with Smith. That’s the bigger image that also must be the main focus, particularly if Alexander is out for the long term.
As the season continues and the accidents undoubtedly pile up for each staff, the areas of want turn into far more obvious. Green Bay is already skinny at cornerback, and it’s solely Week 5. The offensive line has been phenomenal, with David Bakhtiari and Elgton Jenkins lacking time. How for much longer it might probably maintain up is anybody’s guess, however the Packers must be ready in case it have been to worsen up entrance from an harm standpoint.
Teams don’t sometimes simply minimize ties with actually good gamers in the course of the season, particularly gamers held within the highest regard relating to character and angle like Smith. Dallas seen Smith as expendable. And whereas they’ve made loads of errors up to now, no one was prepared to surrender draft capital or eat among the wage when his title was reportedly introduced up earlier than the Cowboys launched him. This isn’t the identical Jaylon Smith from two years in the past.
Signing Smith received’t be a catastrophe and received’t benefit outrage. But the transfer doesn’t make any sense given the place the weak spots are on this roster and what areas could must be addressed with a commerce down the street. He’s a well known title, but when the optimists are suggesting Smith is an ideal comfort prize for lacking out on Gilmore, they are going to be disenchanted.