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Wednesday, March 14, 2007
Updated: March 16, 12:05 PM ET
Browns reach 4-year, $12M deal with DT Smith

By John Clayton
ESPN.com

Figuring to draft an offensive player with the third pick in the draft, the Browns helped their defense Wednesday night by reaching a four-year, $12 million deal with Titans defensive tackle Robaire Smith.

 Robaire Smith
Smith

Smith, 30, received a $4 million signing bonus and will be paid a total of $5 million in the first year of the contract. Over the first two years, he will make $7 million. With that type of commitment, the Browns are expected to start him at right defensive end and then possibly move him to tackle on passing downs.

Smith signed the contract Friday.

Smith, who is 6-foot-4, 328 pounds, played four years with Tennessee before leaving via free agency and signing a big deal with the Houston Texans. The Texans released him last year -- his third with the team -- and Smith went back to Tennessee, where he re-emerged as a starter.

The Titans tried to re-sign Smith, but their offer wasn't close enough for him to stay. His signing should start to move a defensive tackle market that has been surprisingly slow during the free-agency period.