The Jaguars began their voluntary workout program in April, which Smith never appeared at. That normally isn't an issue since it is voluntary, but at the time, neither head coach Doug Marrone or GM Dave Caldwell had spoken to the linebacker. The defensive force claims that he needs more time with his family and to focus on his health, which led to this surprising decision. He first released the news on Instagram Thursday afternoon, before sharing it on other platforms.
The team refused to comment on the decision by Smith, who was due to make $9.75 million this season. The team is expected to place him on the "did not report list," which means just the signing bonus of $2.81 million will count against their salary cap. Smith was drafted in the fifth round of the 2014 NFL Draft and had a career-high 134 tackles this past season, leading him to the Pro Bowl. He was also a second-team All Pro in 2017, helping the Jaguars lead the league with seven defensive touchdowns that season. Smith finished with two on the season, including one in the playoffs, but he will be a major absence for that defense this upcoming season.