Smith (pectoral) was placed on injured reserve Monday, Adam Schefter of ESPN reports.
The IR move give the 49ers the flexibility to add another linebacker. Smith is still expected to miss the entire 2017 season, but is technically eligible to return after Week 8 if his recovery is faster than anticipated.
Smith suffered a torn pectoral and is expected to miss the entire season, ESPN.com's Nick Wagoner reports.
Signed to a five-year, $26.5 million contract this offseason, Smith had been taking first-team reps at weakside linebacker ahead of first-round rookie Reuben Foster. The 49ers wanted to ease Foster into action after he was limited during the offseason program while recovering from shoulder surgery, but Smith's expected absence could change the rookie's timeline for taking on a lead role. Ray-Ray Armstrong replaced Smith at Saturday's practice and could also take on some of the vacated snaps.
Smith exited Saturday's practice with an apparent left forearm injury, USA Today's Chris Biderman reports.
When asked if the injury could be long term, head coach Kyle Shanahan said "possibly," according to Matt Barrows of The Sacramento Bee. While there's still hope this may not be anything serious, Smith realistically appears set to miss some time. Look for Ray-Ray Armstrong to take his place in the starting lineup until further notice.
Smith's contract includes $13 million in guaranteed money. He led the Raiders with 103 tackles last season, and added an interception and two forced fumbles. The seventh-year linebacker has had some problems in pass coverage, but will still be a major boost to a run defense that was atrocious in 2016. The 49ers surrendered a whopping 165.9 rushing yards per game last season, good for dead last in the NFL.
Smith (hamstring) is questionable to return to Saturday's wild-card game in Houston.
The Raiders' leading tackler on the season with 103, Smith also notched two forced fumbles, one fumble recovery, and one interception across 15 outings. If he's unable to take the field again Saturday, Daren Bates is the likely candidate to fill in at weak-side linebacker.
|P3||8/27/17||@ MIN||8:00 pm|
|2||9/17/17||@ SEA||4:25 pm|
|4||10/1/17||@ ARI||4:05 pm|
|5||10/8/17||@ IND||1:00 pm|
|6||10/15/17||@ WAS||1:00 pm|
|8||10/29/17||@ PHI||1:00 pm|
|Bye: Week 11|
|13||12/3/17||@ CHI||1:00 pm|
|14||12/10/17||@ HOU||1:00 pm|
|17||12/31/17||@ LAR||4:25 pm|
|2017||San Francisco 49ers||0||0||0.0||0||0||0||0||0.0||0||0||0|
|Year||Team||G||No.||Yds||Lg||Avg||Blk||I20||TB||Downed||No||Ret Yds||TD||Net Avg|
|2017||San Francisco 49ers||0||0||0||0||---||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||---|
|Year||Team||G||Fum||Lost||Fum Forced||Own Rec||Opp Rec||Yds||Tot Rec||TD|
|2017||San Francisco 49ers||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0|