Wide receiver Torrey Smith is poised to leave the Ravens as a free agent, according to multiple NFL sources, and the San Francisco 49ers are the front-runners to land the former Maryland standout.
For Smith to have remained with the Ravens, which several league sources reiterated has been an extremely unlikely scenario for weeks, he would have had to leave several million dollars on the table.
Although no deal has been finalized, sources indicated there's strong mutual interest between the former second-round draft pick and San Francisco. One source characterized the Smith situation as a "done deal with the 49ers," barring any unforeseen snags. Deals cannot become official until Tuesday at 4 p.m., when the league year and free agency signing period begins.
Smith acknowledged his pending departure Sunday night with a blog in which he thanked the Ravens for his four years in Baltimore.
Update: Smith signed a five-year, $40 million deal that includes $22 million guaranteed.
Smith got off to a slow start in 2014, posting just six catches for 85 yards in the first three games. Over the final 13 games of the season, he averaged 3.3 receptions for 52 yards and 0.85 touchdowns, which equates to #20 WR-type numbers in PPR formats. As it stands, he finished as the #29 WR in PPR and #19 in standard formats (thanks to the high touchdown rate), which is the fourth time he has finished in the top 23 (in standard formats) in his four-year career. He'll join a 49ers receiving corps that is likely losing Michael Crabtree and has a still-effective Anquan Boldin as a possession receiver. Smith will serve as a deep threat for QB Colin Kaepernick, though this move has to be considered a downgrade from an offensive/quarterback standpoint since the 49ers are typically run-heavy and Joe Flacco is pretty adept at putting touch on the deep ball. Throwing with touch is not one of Kaepernick's strengths.