Packers get LB Jaylon Smith for league-minimum salary in 2021

·2 min read

The Green Bay Packers won’t even pay three-quarters of a million dollars for new linebacker Jaylon Smith in 2021.

According to Ian Rapoport of NFL Network, Smith’s one-year deal with the Packers is worth just $770,000, or the league minimum over the final 13 games for a player with at least four accrued seasons.

Smith didn’t need a big paycheck from the Packers because he’s already getting $7.2 million in guaranteed money from the Dallas Cowboys, who released him on Wednesday. Overall, Smith made over $31 million from the Cowboys over the last five years.

The presence of coach Matt LaFleur in Green Bay lured Smith to the Packers. According to Rapoport, the relationship between LaFleur and Smith – first forged at Notre Dame – put the Packers at the very top of Smith’s wishlist after he became a free agent.

For the Packers, signing Smith will be a risk-free addition. The team will pay next to nothing to see if Smith can be a contributor at a need position. A one-time Pro Bowler who has produced 100 or more tackles in each of the last three seasons, Smith now gets a chance to work alongside De’Vondre Campbell in Joe Barry’s defense.

Sometimes, a veteran player needs a change of scenery. Campbell is a great example. The Packers are hoping Smith can be the same type of bargain that Campbell has been through the first four games of 2021.

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