sportokbet | After 11 seasons in the NFL, longtime cornerback Jimmy Smith has decided to retire

sportokbet | After 11 seasons in the NFL, longtime cornerback Jimmy Smith has decided to retire post thumbnail image

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One of the Ravens’ cornerbacks has decided to retire after several years in the NFL. The organization tweeted on Monday that Jimmy Smith will be ending his NFL career.

Smith, a cornerback who was not well known until his last two seasons at Colorado, was selected by Baltimore with the 27th overall choice in the 2011 draft. With the expectation that Smith would develop into a dominant force on defense for the following decade, the Ravens selected him.

Jimmy Smith

Throughout his 11 years in Baltimore, Smith alternated between good and bad seasons, never quite living up to that expectation. His decision to retire came after he had spent exactly one month as a free agent during the 2022 season.

After longtime competitor Ben Roethlisberger of the Pittsburgh Steelers announced his retirement in January, Smith acknowledged in January that he was considering retirement as well.

Smith said, “I’m not going to sit here and pretend like I don’t think about it (retirement).” Since I’m a professional football player, it’s quite challenging. It’s fantastic, by the way. That’s how I spend my days. There are moments when the mere thought of not playing leaves me with the feeling that “I don’t want to do anything else.”

In order to have more time with my loved ones and pursue other interests, I sometimes wish I could cross over to the other side. While this is true, another part of me is thinking, “dude, you know very well you’re a football player you want to be on the field.”

Smith played with the Ravens for almost a decade, starting with his first year while the lockout was still in full swing and culminating with his two interceptions being returned for touchdowns. While he showed promise early in his career, it wasn’t until his third year that Smith became a regular starter, and it was in that year that he made his mark with 15 pass breakups and 3 fumble recoveries.

Smith had two great years in 2013 and 2014, leading to a $40 million contract extension over four years, but he was limited in 2015 by lingering symptoms from a foot ailment. Beginning with the foot injury, Smith’s career was plagued by setbacks. He lost significant time in 2017 and 2018 due to bans and dealt with many ailments.

In 2017, the same year that current starting cornerback for the Ravens, Marlon Humphrey, was drafted, he equaled his career best with four interceptions. Humphrey was promoted to the starting lineup in 2018 when Smith was given a second suspension, and the Ravens added cornerback Marcus Peters the following year to bolster their defense. Smith’s position eventually diminished to the point that he considered leaving Baltimore in 2020, but ultimately decided to continue there for his last two seasons.

After Monday’s news, that period of waiting is over. And as Smith himself said back in January, he is and always will be a Raven.

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