Baltimore Ravens: Jimmy Smith suspended four games
By Cory Hughes
There were rumors floating around during last night’s preseason game vs the Colts that Jimmy Smith was facing a multiple game suspension. Today it became official that the cornerback will be suspended for the first four games of the 2018 season.
Every Raven fan will tell you that Jimmy Smith is just as good as any cornerback in the league on his good day. The problem is, the Baltimore veteran just can’t seem to stay on the field. This will be the third season in a row now that the team will have to see time without their starting cornerback. Jeff Zrebiec of The Athletic, reported this story and shared the Ravens statement on Twitter.
The past two years it was season ending injuries that forced Smith not to be on the field with his team. But last year, after his Achilles injury that ended his season, news broke that he failed a drug test and was facing a four-game suspension. He was able to serve the suspension consecutively with his injury, so he didn’t have to miss any time more time than he already was, with his Achilles tear. Now the Ravens will have to be without their go to guy for the start of 2018 season.
The Ravens have played without Jimmy Smith the last two seasons. And when he’s not on the field, the defense is a totally different unit. Odell Beckham went for over 222 yards and a touchdown. Dez Bryant gained over a 100 yards and scored two touchdowns just two seasons ago. And Chris Hogan had himself a game scoring a touchdown, nabbing five catches for over 125 yards. This defense, at least the past three seasons, hasn’t been the same when 22 isn’t in the secondary. On a goodnight Smith can lockdown just about any number one wide receiver on any team the Ravens play.
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Can they survive without Jimmy Smith the first four games?
Smith will not be appealing his four game suspension and will be taking full responsibility for his actions off the field.
How will the Ravens do in his absence? They play the Buffalo Bills, the Bengals, The Broncos, and the division rival Steelers. The only game that should worry anybody would be the Steelers, right? The Bengals do have AJ Green, The Broncos do have a few young wide receivers in DaeSean Hamilton and Courtland Sutton. But they do have Case Keenum who has been shaky in the past and Wink should be prepared to throw everything but the kitchen sink at him. And Harbaugh and Wink should be able to shake up the rookie Josh Allen if he’s the starter come week one.
But facing off against the Steelers without Jimmy should make every Raven fan a little concerned. Antonio Brown, Juju Schuster, James Washington and Jesse James against a relatively young secondary in Marlon Humphery and Tavon Young. I’m sure the front office is more than satisfied that they decided to keep Brandon Carr around with this suspension being handed down. If the Ravens can start the season 3-1 it would be a godsend. That is because after week four is when the schedule gets a lot tougher.
Is this the beginning of the end for Jimmy Smith in Baltimore?
Over the next two seasons, Jimmy Smith is a combined 30-million-dollar cap hit. 15 each year. Jimmy is certainly worth it, if he was consistently on the field. But that isn’t the case. And it hasn’t been for the past three seasons. And it begs to question: Will moving on from Jimmy Smith be Eric DeCosta’s first big move as shot caller in Baltimore?
You can argue that they have drafted his heir in Marlon Humphrey. And next years draft class has its fair share of talent at cornerback. Andreaz Williams, Deandre Baker, Trayvon Mullen, Michael Jackson. Saving 30 million dollars in cap would be quite the first move for a rookie GM.