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Jason Smith faces the chopping block in St. Louis

Philadelphia Eagles v St. Louis Rams Getty Images

The Rams have had plenty of high picks in the past few years.  Some have worked out, some did at first but then didn’t (but still could).

One has been a major disappointment.

Jason Smith, the second overall selection in the 2009 draft, has appeared in only 29 of 48 games.  And when he has played, he hasn’t played in noteworthy fashion.

Drafted as a left tackle, Smith has landed on the right side.  He soon will be landing on waivers, unless he agrees to a dramatic reduction in his salary.

Per a league source, Smith will face the time-honored take-a-pay-cut-or-take-a-hike ultimatum in the offseason, given that (per NFLPA records) Smith is due to earn a base salary of $10 million in 2012.  With only $1 million of it guaranteed, the Rams won’t hesitate to dump Smith, if he won’t dump much of his scheduled pay.

In 2011, Smith received $8.5 million in base salary, as part of the windfall previously given to unproven players taken at the top of the draft.

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44 Responses to “Jason Smith faces the chopping block in St. Louis”
  1. dmc1542 says: Jan 18, 2012 9:37 AM

    You know Philly will take him!

  2. 46defense says: Jan 18, 2012 9:43 AM

    Now starting at LT for the Chicago Bears… Jason Smith!

  3. claymatthewsisonsteroids says: Jan 18, 2012 9:43 AM

    The Jamarcus Russel of left tackles.

  4. shackdelrio says: Jan 18, 2012 9:45 AM

    The top 12 of that draft may go down as one of the worst in NFL history.

  5. lolb23 says: Jan 18, 2012 9:45 AM

    And to think the dummy “sports reporters” in Detroit were begging for this guy over Matthew Stafford. Suck it Valenti and Foster ya Bums!

  6. t16rich says: Jan 18, 2012 9:46 AM

    Hasnt lived up to the potential. Or hasnt worked towards reaching his true potential. Dont matter where your drafted. You stll gotta work

  7. bigjdve says: Jan 18, 2012 9:48 AM

    If I were he, I would take the hike. He could probably get a decent contract somewhere else, and would probably play better with the lack of expectations.

    Where he is, he will always be expected to live up to expectations and they will be higher because people want him to make up for the lack of making expectations to this point.

  8. brownsfn says: Jan 18, 2012 9:49 AM

    Welcome to Cleveland and your new backup RT position Mr. Smith…

  9. We'reFineThere says: Jan 18, 2012 9:53 AM

    Eagles will get him. They looked at him hard before trading for Peters (and realizing he would be drafted out of reach). He looked at his best blocking downfield for Griffen……

  10. realnflmaster says: Jan 18, 2012 9:58 AM

    So much potential. Too many injuries, and like a lot of these Top 10 picks, once they sign that deal the willingness to continue to put in the work disappears.

  11. gmen1987 says: Jan 18, 2012 9:58 AM

    And this is the guy some Detroit fans and sports columnist wanted instead of Matt Stafford in 2009.

    Outside of Stafford, the top of that 2009 draft is pretty disappointing. If Smith is released, then that means that 2 of the top four players are not with their original teams after just 3 years. Including the “safest” pick in the draft Aaron Curry. Outside of Stafford, the middle and later picks of the 1st round have had a bigger impact then to top picks.

  12. buhbay1c says: Jan 18, 2012 9:58 AM

    If the Rams cut him that pretty much kills any chance of them trading down. They would have to take Kalil at #2. As a Vikings fan, I welcome this opportunity to take advantage of Daniel Snyder, the dumbest smart man alive.

  13. raythestabber says: Jan 18, 2012 10:00 AM

    I am sure he will have no problem finding a job as a turnstile worker

  14. svcfilmguy says: Jan 18, 2012 10:01 AM

    Why would they keep him even if he did take a pay cut? A bad player is a bad player. After all this time, his draft position is irrelevant. New GM + new coach = no loyalty towards Smith. He can’t play, so even if he agreed to the bare minimum salary, there really isn’t any reason to hold onto him. Trade back in the draft (someone will desperately want Griffin) and start from scratch.

  15. rheinzec says: Jan 18, 2012 10:01 AM

    Poor Rams got 2 expensive picks (Smith, Bradford) before the new labor agreement. Unlike the great timing of the Colts.

  16. docboss says: Jan 18, 2012 10:04 AM

    He is a significant concussion risk. With a damaged knee or broken bone you can reasonably predict timing and outcome. With concussions, the player is a ticking timebomb. If healthy, he could move to guard, but his pass protection skills are marginal at best. Bust. He might be worth the minimum as a backup, but he cannot be considered a reliable starter at any position. A Devaney miss although plenty of “experts” thought it was a great pick at the time. Joins Tye Hill, Alex Barron, Trung Canidate, Jimmy Kennedy, Damione Lewis, and Robert Thomas as first round busts. Anybody wonder why the Rams are so bad?

  17. musicman495 says: Jan 18, 2012 10:09 AM

    Leonard Davis was also a #2 pick by the Cardinals in the 2001 draft and was a bust as a tackle, but has had a productive career as a guard for the Cowboys and others. Worthy of a #2 pick? No, but productive. Smith could still have a good NFL career if he is coachable, willing to take less money, and is flexible about positions. Otherwise he will be out of football.

  18. duanethomas says: Jan 18, 2012 10:12 AM

    Could be a decent guard somewhere, with no expectations he might do alright.

  19. threedeep1998 says: Jan 18, 2012 10:17 AM

    Bad class of 1st round picks in 2009? Percy Harvin would like to disagree. Stafford would like to disagree.

  20. sj39 says: Jan 18, 2012 10:20 AM

    He’s not a bad player at all. His problem is with concussions. He is a classic injury bust case. A bust non-the-less but it is injury related only, nothing more. Comparing him to Jamarcus Russel is asinine.

  21. thegreatness34 says: Jan 18, 2012 10:20 AM

    $8.5 million to stink…… Think about that. $8.5 MILLION for one season and the loser can’t even motivate his fat ass. Wonder why there was a lockout??? This clown and other losers like him are exhibit A!

  22. godofwine330 says: Jan 18, 2012 10:20 AM

    I would take a look-see of him in Cleveland. Maybe at RT or G. If I am not mistaken, wasn’t he a guard in college? Nope, that was Brandon Albert who went ot KC. Still, RT or guard for my Browns at a cheap price (anything is better than Turnstile Pashos).

  23. realfootballfan says: Jan 18, 2012 10:29 AM

    Even three years later, I still don’t understand how all these “experts” saw this guy as an elite tackle prospect unless his agent paid them to say so.

    While they were all to busy laughing at the late icon, Al Davis, for taking Darius Heyward-Bey at 7 in that draft, he’s actually turned into one of the more promising picks of that first round class, while i have no idea who ever imagined this guy would ever be in the class of an Orlando Pace, Walter Jones, etc.

    He didn’t even block out of pro sets in college, and he played at Baylor for Christ sake. It wasn’t like he was some transcendent talent that stood out there like RG III or something.

  24. gmen1987 says: Jan 18, 2012 10:40 AM

    shackdelrio says:
    Jan 18, 2012 9:45 AM
    The top 12 of that draft may go down as one of the worst in NFL history.

    ==================================
    Really Goobs?

    The number 1 pick has done pretty good in case if you didn’t notice. BJ Raji and Michael Crabtree have done decently. Mark Sanchez has been an average player.

    There have been some collaso busts so far, but there has been are worse drafts, such as the 2005 among more recent drafts.

  25. robigd says: Jan 18, 2012 10:43 AM

    Eugene Monroe is by far the best LT of this draft class.

    He has shown improvement every year and is quietly developing into an elite LT in the NFL.

    Still cannot believe Monroe fell to the Jags in this draft. What a gift!

  26. pooflingingmonkey says: Jan 18, 2012 11:15 AM

    Meanwhile, the Bengals Andre Smith has actually developed into a very solid RT.

  27. Nevis says: Jan 18, 2012 11:19 AM

    Maybe the Cowboys can sign him and move him to Guard, just like they do with other high-pick Tackle busts.

  28. 4evrnyt says: Jan 18, 2012 11:19 AM

    Just goes to prove once again that you NEVER know how these kids are going to work out.

    If you remember the 2009 draft Jason Smith was a guaranteed 10 year starter at left tackle at the time…so much for the people that make those kinds of guarantees.

  29. eaglesnoles05 says: Jan 18, 2012 11:23 AM

    Philly will give him a shot on the hopes that he can improve with good OL coaching, and that we can mover herremans back to OG. Peters, Heremans, Kelce, Watkins, Smith. Dare I say the dream team? Lol,nhell no, i do not. But that’s worth a shot as an OL if it’s not too pricey…look for eagles, and bears to be players here.

  30. shackdelrio says: Jan 18, 2012 11:45 AM

    “gmen1987 says:
    Jan 18, 2012 10:40 AM
    Really Goobs?

    The number 1 pick has done pretty good in case if you didn’t notice. BJ Raji and Michael Crabtree have done decently. Mark Sanchez has been an average player.”

    Wow. You make such a compelling argument.

    As for the 2005 draft. You have to be joking trying to say the top of the draft was worse than ’09.

    I’ll make not how terrible it was this Sunday when Alex Smith, Antrel Rolle and Carlos Rogers are starting in the NFC title game.

  31. dachozen1 says: Jan 18, 2012 11:55 AM

    It’s funny how regular people always take the side of the establishment. When a player underperforms he takes a pay cut or released from contract. When a player overperforms their contract and want more money, he is called a whiner and a crybaby. Only in America do we always side with the big wigs but claim we’re for the reg guy. It’s rich and richer (players /owners) but the players are closer to you than the owners…

  32. cannonballdookie says: Jan 18, 2012 12:00 PM

    This bum is gonna make them very cautious of drafting a lineman high again this year, but it’s still a need for them. It will be a tough call come draft day.

    I thought he and Saffold were solid last season, but everything fell apart this year and they regressed badly. They have a lot of needs but they could actually be worse. At least their D is pretty solid, they played well enough with practice squad guys in their secondary and Chris Long is a certified stud.

  33. byrds71 says: Jan 18, 2012 12:15 PM

    eaglesnoles05 says:Jan 18, 2012 11:23 AM

    Philly will give him a shot on the hopes that he can improve with good OL coaching, and that we can mover herremans back to OG. Peters, Heremans, Kelce, Watkins, Smith. Dare I say the dream team? Lol,nhell no, i do not. But that’s worth a shot as an OL if it’s not too pricey…look for eagles, and bears to be players here.
    ——————————————————–
    Simmer down there buddy, Herremans is staying at RT, and the Byrds resign Mathis at LG, who played very well there. He could be a back-up, at T and G maybe, if he stays healthy and learns the position, with proper coaching and technique, Howard Mudd can get the most out of guys like him, but he has to stay on the field, concussion problems? No, thanks.

  34. emperorzero says: Jan 18, 2012 12:24 PM

    ’09 might not be a good draft, but it can’t even begin to cmpare to the disater that was the ’87 draft class. Now there is a bunch of bums.

  35. ramofsteel says: Jan 18, 2012 12:43 PM

    I really wish people will take it easy on Smith. The guy has gotten 2 concussions in 3 years. The latest one was the scariest, and had to be carted off the field. Yeah he wasn’t #2 pick performer, but he did work hard and try to be better. In other words, he wasn’t Alex Barron.

  36. durazor says: Jan 18, 2012 12:45 PM

    The Vikings will give you 3 #1 Picks, 5 #2 Picks 2 #3 Picks and a 4th rounder for him, think about it…

  37. myersm531 says: Jan 18, 2012 12:50 PM

    Jason smith, welcome to Pittsburgh.

  38. deathmonkey41 says: Jan 18, 2012 1:20 PM

    As a life-long Rams fan, I can tell you that if you’re looking for a lineman who spends most of this time getting pushed back into your QB, then Jason Smith is your man.

  39. trollhammer20 says: Jan 18, 2012 2:18 PM

    If he makes the chopping block, that will be the first time he’s made a block in his time with the Rams.

    Thanks, folks, I’ll be here all week. Try the veal.

  40. skitd says: Jan 18, 2012 3:01 PM

    The only reason Jason Smith was drafted #2 overall is the fact that the Rams were in desperate need of a tackle at the time. He was so bad that even though he was drafted to be a LT the coaching staff realized they had reached because of their need and switched him to RT.

  41. ramsfaninstl says: Jan 18, 2012 3:09 PM

    He is a significant concussion risk. With a damaged knee or broken bone you can reasonably predict timing and outcome. With concussions, the player is a ticking timebomb. If healthy, he could move to guard, but his pass protection skills are marginal at best. Bust. He might be worth the minimum as a backup, but he cannot be considered a reliable starter at any position. A Devaney miss although plenty of “experts” thought it was a great pick at the time. Joins Tye Hill, Alex Barron, Trung Canidate, Jimmy Kennedy, Damione Lewis, and Robert Thomas as first round busts. Anybody wonder why the Rams are so bad?
    ———————-
    Add Adam Archuletta 2001, Lawrence Phillips 1996, Robert Thomas 2002. Adam Carriker 2007
    Truely pathetic….

  42. ramcountry says: Jan 18, 2012 5:24 PM

    I hope he takes the paycut and the Rams keep him on for at least one more year.

    Yes, he hasn’t been great so far but he has had to deal with injuries and hasn’t been helped by a very poor position coach in Steve Loney.

    I would just hate to see this turn out like Laurent Robinson. Rams gave up on him too fast, he went elsewhere and blossomed.

  43. brenenostler says: Jan 18, 2012 6:25 PM

    Chris Long has been a bigger disappointment

  44. kenudo says: Jan 21, 2012 6:47 PM

    Picks like this are why the Rams are consistent bottom-feeders. Even their supposed franchise QB hasn’t looked like all he’s talked up to be as of late. Jeff Fisher won’t help such a sorry team.

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