Report: Broncos Have Interest in Free Agent DL Antonio Smith


According to a report from ESPN’s Jeff Legwold, the Denver Broncos are apparently interested in recently released defensive lineman Antonio Smith, formerly of the Oakland Raiders.

The Raiders cut Smith, and immediately it was reported the Houston Texans had interest in bringing him back. It wasn’t long after that the former coaching staff in Houston (now in Denver) apparently expressed interest in him as well. Here’s the report from Legwold:

“The Denver Broncos have interest in recently-available defensive end Antonio Smith and don’t have to look far for a detailed scouting report on the 33-year-old.

Broncos defensive line coach Bill Kollar was Smith’s defensive line coach for all five of Smith’s seasons with the Houston Texans. Smith is known to be a player Kollar holds in high regard for Smith’s on-field work as well as locker-room presence.”

In addition to the report from Legwold, here’s an interesting post from the official team Twitter page…

Adding Smith is a smart idea for the Broncos, who are pretty strapped against the cap right now. They don’t have a ton of wiggle room, but can afford a veteran like Smith, and could use him for some depth on the defensive line, where they lost Terrance Knighton this offseason to the Washington Redskins.

Smith has been a really productive pass rusher in his career as a five technique in a 3-4 defensive look, and was a misfit in Oakland’s 4-3 scheme where plenty of big name free agents failed to produce last year.

The Broncos also have the luxury, as Legwold pointed out, of one of the best defensive line coaches in the league in Bill Kollar, the man who helped Smith to some of his most productive NFL seasons while with the Texans.

Earlier this offseason, the Broncos signed defensive lineman Vance Walker, who can play multiple positions on the defensive front. They are slowly building their way to a really good looking group up front with starters Derek Wolfe, Malik Jackson, and Sylvester Williams being backed up (for the time being) by Vance Walker and Marvin Austin.

Adding Smith would be a nice ‘final’ piece for the Broncos’ defensive line.

Next: Broncos Looking at Northwestern QB