Ex-Cowboys $68 Million Pro Bowler Poached by Raiders

Jaylon Smith

Getty Dallas Cowboys rumors reveal that the team's former linebacker Jaylon Smith (left) is joining the Las Vegas Raiders.

The latest Dallas Cowboys rumors show that the team’s former star player Jaylon Smith is once again on the move. Linebacker Jaylon Smith was on the New Orleans Saints practice squad, but the Las Vegas Raiders poached the veteran to add to the team’s active roster.

Smith’s agent Doug Hendrickson announced the news that the defender was heading to Las Vegas. NFL rules allow for teams to add players off of opposing franchise’s practice squads if they are signed to their 53-man active roster.

The former Pro Bowl linebacker has bounced around since being released by Dallas at the mid-season mark back in 2021. The Raiders are Smith’s fourth team since being cut by the Cowboys. Smith has also had short stints with the Packers, Giants and Saints since wearing a star on his helmet.

Smith has yet to play a snap in the NFL this season despite having a productive year in New York during 2022. The defender posted 88 tackles in 13 appearances, including 11 starts, for the Giants in 2022.

Las Vegas Raiders LB Jaylon Smith Had a $68 Million Contract With the Dallas Cowboys Scheduled Through 2024

The veteran was once a cornerstone player on the Cowboys defense starting 56 games during his five seasons in Dallas. Ultimately, Smith’s production was not coinciding with the linebacker’s contract given his sizable six-year, $68 million deal with Dallas.

The contract was initially slated to go through the 2024 season before the Cowboys released Smith. Owner Jerry Jones admitted Smith was showing signs of not fully recovering from a serious leg injury sustained at Notre Dame.

“Well, it was [hard] principally because he’s such a warrior,” Jones said on the decision to release Smith during an October 8, 2022 interview with 105.3 The Fan. “He really was what you think about when you think of somebody overcoming adversity and for this game. He had [a] great hurdle to overcome to overcome his injury and that drop foot. It’s called drop foot that he had and still takes him to this day, was mind over matter in my mind.”

Cowboys Rumors: Dallas Lost 2 Players to Texans & Jets

The Cowboys had some of their own players poached heading into their Week 9 matchup against the Eagles. The Texans claimed tight end Eric Saubert while the Jets landed guard Chris Glaser. Dallas signed veteran offensive lineman Dakoda Shepley to fill one of the vacated roster spots on the team’s practice squad.

“Less than one week after signing Eric Saubert to the practice squad, during the team’s bye week, and using his first elevation to the active roster in Week 8 against the Los Angeles Rams, the veteran tight end has been poached by the Houston Texans,” the Cowboys website detailed. “He must now remain on their active roster for a minimum of three games.

“The same is true of offensive lineman (guard) Chris Glaser, who was also poached, though he’s heading to the New York Jets, effective immediately. To replace Glaser, the Cowboys re-signed Dakoda Shepley to the practice squad — ensuring insurance for the offensive line.”