Former All-Pro linebacker is moving to Minnesota as his next NFL home. Smith was a seven-year veteran of defensive play and had made cryptic comments leading up to the signing.
Tom Pelissero, the ex-Green Bay Packers’ star and the rival Vikings’ player, made the official announcement Tuesday.
Smith used Twitter to post a tweet saying “Meet the quarterback.” This is the famous saying of the Purple People Eaters (defensive line of the Minnesota Vikings between the 1960s and the 1970s).
Following Monday’s meeting between Smith and the Vikings, the Kentucky products sent this tweet. After Smith pulled out of a contract worth $35 million for four years with the Baltimore Ravens, this tweet was sent.
Za’Darius Smith agreed to terms with the Minnesota Vikings, per source.
3 year deal
Base value of 42 million
Worth up to 47 million with incentives
14 million APY
— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) March 22, 2022
Minnesota has recently reached an agreement with edge rusher Danielle Hunter. The Vikings will have one of the best pass-rushing defensive lines in the league next year, thanks to Smith and Hunter. The 2021 season saw both Smith and Hunter get hurt, so they will be seeking a new start with their new team.
Smith only played 18 snaps in his third season in Green Bay. Smith only had one tackle in the season, which is not unusual for a healthy 30-year-old. Smith appeared in all three of his previous seasons and in 13 consecutive games throughout his career.
Smith left Kentucky after four seasons and spent his first four years in Baltimore as a backup before signing with the Packers. Smith was a Green Bay starter in his second season. He had 26 sacks, 56 tackles, and 29 tackles loss.
Smith has 227 total tackles, 44.5sacks, 53 TFL, and eight forced fumbles in 91 games. He only hopes to increase those numbers in Minnesota.