CLEVELAND — The Cleveland Browns signed Malcolm Smith Sunday, adding both depth and veteran experience to the linebacker room.
Smith, a 6 foot, 225 pound linebacker in his eighth season, was selected in the seventh round by the Seattle Seahawks in the 2011 NFL Draft, where he spent four seasons.
With the Seahawks, Smith recorded 10 tackles, one fumble recovery and an interception for a touchdown during Seattle’s 43-8 victory over the Denver Broncos in Super Bowl XLVIII. Due to his remarkable performance, Smith was named the Super Bowl MVP, one of just 10 defensive players to have won those honors.
Over the eight seasons he’s played in the league, Smith has spent time on the Seahawks, the Oakland Raiders, the San Francisco 49ers, the Jacksonville Jaguars and the Dallas Cowboys, where he most recently played.
Smith has recorded 295 career tackles, 10 forced fumbles, six sacks, four interceptions and three fumble recoveries over his career.
After losing Joe Schobert and Christian Kirksey, the Browns began addressing the issue of a thin linebacker room this offseason, selecting Jacob Phillips in the third round of this year’s draft as well as signing B.J. Goodson in March and Solomon Ajayi in May. The new additions joined Mack Wilson, Sione Takitaki, Tae Davis, Willie Harvey, and Montrel Meander.
With Wilson suffering a knee injury during practice last week and uncertainty surrounding when he’ll be able to return, the signing of Smith helps immensely.
It also doesn’t hurt to have more veteran leadership to help guide a young linebacker room.
Smith now tops Goodson as the most experienced linebacker on the team. Goodson’s five years of experience with Smith’s nine years can hopefully provide strength and leadership to the young group.
The Browns active roster currently sits at 80 players.