The New York Jets are close to finalizing a deal to acquire right tackle Jason Smith from the St. Louis Rams, according to Rich Cimini of ESPN New York. Jets right tackle Wayne Hunter will reportedly be a part of the deal as well.
Smith was the second overall pick in the 2009 NFL Draft, however, he recently lost his job to Barry Richardson, who the Rams signed in May to a one-year deal. The 26-year-old Smith has played in 29 games for the St. Louis Rams over his three-year career. He has two years remaining on his current contract.
For the Jets and tackle Wayne Hunter, who had been with the team since 2007, this move comes as no surprise. Hunter was benched in favor of Austin Howard after allowing 2.5 sacks in an August 18 preseason matchup with the New York Giants.
Smith fills the void which the Jets tried to fill with Jeff Otah, another former first round pick. New York traded for Otah just before the start of training camp, however, the trade was nullified when Otah failed his physical.
Smith has $4 million guaranteed remaining on his contract, while Hunter has $2.45 million guaranteed remaining. If indeed the trade does become official, both players will now look to benefit from a change of scenery.