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Green Bay Packers sign Preston Smith to $52.5 million contract extension

Matt Johnson
Preston Smith, Green Bay Packers
Appleton Post-Crescent -USA TODAY NETWORK

The Green Bay Packers made their first big signing of the NFL offseason, agreeing to a $52.5 million contract extension with edge rusher Preston Smith.

Needing to create room against the NFL salary cap, Green Bay is rewarding one of its best defensive players with a long-term deal. The new contract will provide Smith with more than $65 million over the next five seasons and equips the Packers with the necessary cap room for a potential Davante Adams contract extension.

As Ian Rapoport of NFL Network notes, the multi-year extension will “drastically” lower the 2022 cap hit of Smith’s contract. He will still receive $14 million in the first year of the deal, thanks to a signing bonus spread out over the next five years.

Once viewed as a potential cap casualty a year ago, Smith proved his value to the Packers with a strong 2021 season. With a new extension signed, it’s expected that fellow edge rusher Za’Darius Smith will be released in the near future.

While this is good news for the Packers, not everything is positive. Adams informed the team he will not play on the franchise tag, threatening to sit out the 2022 season unless he is traded or receives a contract extension.