Two days after the Philadelphia Eagles let go of disappointing 2014 first-round draft pick Marcus Smith, the Seattle Seahawks are set to sign him after he cleared waivers on Thursday. Both Ian Rapoport and Adam Schefter confirmed the news on Friday.
I won’t pretend I have deep knowledge of the Eagles defense, but it’s probably not a good thing that Smith never actually started for Philadelphia in three seasons with the team. Standing 6’3” and weighing 251 pounds, the 25-year-old former Louisville star played in 37 games, racking up a whopping 4 sacks and 16 tackles. One of those sacks was against Dak Prescott last season, as the photo evidence at the top of the page proves.
Smith started out as a 3-4 linebacker, then switched to defensive end when Philadelphia switched to Jim Schwartz’s 4-3 scheme. Even still, of his 397 snaps in 2016, 218 were on defense and the remaining 179 came on special teams.
During Smith’s rookie season, in which he didn’t even manage 80 snaps total, then-Eagles HC Chip Kelly had this to say about him:
"I see a guy who's inconsistent at times," Kelly explained. "I think he's got a good skill-set. He can run around and make plays but he's not consistent enough to earn playing time over the guys that are playing. For me to say to Brandon Graham; 'Brandon, I'm going to have you sit down ... There's a guy that's done an unbelievable job in his situation. He's improved as a special teams player, he's improved as an outside linebacker, he's been a tremendous asset to our football team this year.
It obviously didn’t work out for Smith in Philadelphia, whose 2014 draft can only be described as extremely bad, but the Seahawks under Pete Carroll are always willing to give “draft busts” another chance (see: Mike Williams and currently Dion Jordan), so we’ll see what Smith is made of once preseason begins.