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Saints asking Will Smith to take big pay cut

The New Orleans Saints have asked defensive end Will Smith to take a steep pay cut, as expected, according to a source with knowledge of the situation.

The Saints are in a cap crunch, and Smith is set to count $10 million against the cap. He is a luxury they could not afford at that rate, despite their need for a pass rusher.

Linebacker Jonathan Vilma is another candidate for departure, and the situations with both players should come into better focus after the combine. Smith will have to assess whether it makes more sense to take the Saints' reduced offer or accept his release and take his chances in free agency.

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