Any interest here?? I like him, nothing spectacular but a fundamentally sound LB. 33 yrs old, 6-2 237. Non-stop motor, physical, quick, smart, instinctive, disciplined, reads plays well and has good range. He made all the defensive calls for the 49ers. Adequate in coverage because he is slowing down with age but reads/reacts well to QB. Good blitzer and textbook tackler who wraps up, which was a little prob for us last year at some points of the season.
POSTED 3:51 p.m. EST, February 19, 2008
49ERS CUT DEREK SMITH
by Michael David Smith
The San Francisco 49ers announced today that they cut 11-year veteran linebacker Derek Smith.
"Decisions like this are a difficult part of a great business," 49ers coach Mike Nolan said. "Derek has been an important member of the 49ers, and you don't make these kinds of decisions without battling the emotion that is natural when you are dealing with a player that has done so much for your organization."
The 33-year-old Smith started 14 games for the 49ers in 2007, but as the season went on it became clear that the team would build its defense around younger players, especially Rookie of the Year Patrick Willis. Nolan said that youth movement was the primary reason for today's move.
"We made the decision because we have quality linebackers who we think are the future of the 49ers," Nolan said. "Derek was a model professional during his seven seasons with the 49ers, and he influenced a lot of the younger players with his work ethic."
Although Smith, who had one season left on his contract, had said he would have preferred to play out the duration of his deal, he indicated at the end of the 2007 season that he knew he could get cut and added, "It's a business, pure and simple."