Rams have to make a decision on Jason Smith by first day of 2013 league year

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One of the interesting tweaks in the recent restructuring of Jason Smith’s contract is that, for 2013, his base salary of $12 million has been reduced to $750,000 with an $11.25 million roster bonus.

The only question is when the roster bonus comes due, given that it forces the Rams to make a decision on Smith before Week One of the regular season, when the $12 million would be, as a practical matter, guaranteed.

Per a source with knowledge of the contract, the $11.25 million comes due on the first day of the 2013 league year.  Which means that, if the Rams decide they don’t want to pay Smith $12 million next year, they’ll need to give Smith his freedom on the first day of free agency.