The Lions wasted little time in filling the void created by Jared DeVries' injury by signing defensive lineman Shaun Smith, who was just released by the Browns this past weekend. Smith was in Allen Park for a visit earlier today, showing that the Lions were interested in him even before DeVries suffered his season-ending injury. Once that happened, it was pretty clear that Smith's chances of becoming a Lion were pretty good, and as we now know, Martin Mayhew and company didn't wait long to add him to the roster.
According to Smith's agent, Neal Schwartz, his deal is worth $1 million for one year.
Smith was released by the Browns mainly due to his attitude. He got into it with the team's defensive line coach on Friday and in general didn't seem to get along with the new coaching staff. One day later, he was off the team. This all came after he supposedly punched Brady Quinn in the face in the weight room last December.
It's tough to figure out if Smith is a defensive end or defensive tackle, so for right now I'll say he can play either position. His size (6-2, 325 lbs.) suggests he is a defensive tackle, but from what I read he plays defensive end as well. With DeVries out, I imagine he will get work at DE primarily, but who knows. Either way he will bring versatility to the D-line and depth at whatever position the Lions want him to play, as he said via his agent.
"But after meeting the coaches, he just said, 'You know what? I want to stay here. I want to play here,'" his agent said. "He told them, 'I just want to play football. You want me to play defensive end, I'll play defensive end. You want me to play defensive tackle, I'll do it.' He just wants to play football."
If Smith can get his attitude in line, he could be a good player for the Lions.