While the Chiefs made a push to retain free-agent cornerback Sean Smith, they apparently couldn’t match what the Raiders were offering.
Smith agreed to a four-year contract worth $40 million, including $20 million guaranteed, with Oakland on Thursday, a source with knowledge of the agreement told The Star. At the end of the day, the Chiefs — who were one of the last three teams in on Smith — were not close to matching the deal, the source said.
NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport first reported the contract details.
Smith recorded 45 tackles, 12 pass deflections and two interceptions for the league’s ninth-best passing defense in 2015. He and rookie Marcus Peters, who finished with a NFL-high eight interceptions, formed one of the league’s best cornerback tandems last season.
After Smith returned from a three-game suspension for a DUI arrest in June 2014, the Chiefs — who were 1-2 — lost their next three games before going on an 11-game winning streak.
Chiefs general manager John Dorsey has noted many times that Smith loves football and the steady improvement Smith has made since he signed a three-year, $16.5 million deal in 2013 seems to prove that.
“Sean had a nice season,” Dorsey said after the season. “We missed him those first three weeks. We did. As a group, I thought that group played very well, as good as a lot of defensive backs in the National Football League.”
Dorsey kept in touch with Smith’s agent, David Canter, over the last month in an apparent bid to keep Smith in the fold. But at the end of the day, Smith took a substantial offer from Oakland, which entered the offseason with approximately $60 million in cap room.
The Chiefs, meanwhile, had a little under $19 million in room to spend prior to their recent shopping frenzy, which included re-signing two team icons in outside linebacker Tamba Hali and Derrick Johnson, a strong starter in defensive lineman Jaye Howard and bringing the top free agent right tackle aboard in Mitchell Schwartz, formerly of the Cleveland Browns.