For some time now, the signs have pointed to the Raiders letting Malcolm Smith leave as a free agent. Well, he may not be going very far. There is mutual interest between Smith and the 49ers according to Peter Schrager of Fox Sports.
49ers not done. Hearing mutual interest between SF and former Seahawks Super Bowl MVP and Raiders LB Malcolm Smith. @gmfb @NFLonFOX— Peter Schrager (@PSchrags) March 9, 2017
Then Mike Garafolo added that it’s pretty much going to happen.
Adding to @PSchrags: Super Bowl XLVII MVP LB Malcolm Smith expected to sign with the 49ers after the start of free agency, sources say.— Mike Garafolo (@MikeGarafolo) March 9, 2017
Smith joined the Raiders two seasons ago a season removed from being named Super Bowl MVP with the Seahawks, the team with which he spent the first four years of his NFL career as a 7th round pick out of USC.
Coming to Oakland made sense as he was following his linebackers coach, Ken Norton Jr, who was taking the defensive coordinator position in Oakland. He played a vital role in the transition, putting up 123 tackles his first year as a full time starter in 2015 and 103 tackles last season.
It was the Raiders intention to upgrade at the inside linebacker spot this offseason, whether in free agency or in the draft. Perhaps both.