OWINGS MILLS, Md. — Baltimore Ravens cornerback Jimmy Smith, who suffered a season-ending Achilles injury Sunday, has been suspended four games for violating the NFL’s policy on performance-enhancing substances, a source told ESPN’s Adam Schefter.
Smith, the Ravens’ top cornerback, decided to drop his appeal and begin serving his suspension after tearing his Achilles in Sunday’s 44-20 victory over the Detroit Lions, the source told Schefter.
The Ravens are expected to place Smith on injured reserve this week. This puts a smudge on what had been Smith’s finest season in the NFL. He made three interceptions and led the Ravens with nine passes broken up.
The suspension will cost Smith a total of $182,352. Smith would have lost $2 million if he hadn’t restructured his deal in August.
Smith’s season ended in the second quarter Sunday, when he fell to the ground while trying to cover a deep route. He has been dealing with an Achilles injury for most of the season and rested it by practicing only once or twice a week.
Injuries have consistently hampered Smith’s career. He has only played two full 16-game seasons in seven years. Smith will have missed a total of 17 games over the past four seasons.
Rookie first-round pick Marlon Humphrey will replace Smith in the starting lineup when Baltimore plays at AFC North-leading Pittsburgh this Sunday night.
If Smith didn’t go down with a significant injury, he might have missed the final four regular-season games anyway, depending on the outcome of the appeal. Smith would then have been eligible for the postseason if Baltimore made the playoffs.
The loss of Smith is a big hit to the Ravens (7-5), who control their playoff fate heading into the final four weeks of the regular season. Smith would’ve helped in covering the likes of Antonio Brown, Josh Gordon, T.Y. Hilton and A.J. Green.