(NEW YORK) — The dreaded torn ACL has struck again this NFL offseason, with the latest victim being New Orleans Saints linebacker Will Smith.
Smith suffered the injury during the team’s preseason game against the Houston Texans. Dr. James Andrews will perform Smith’s surgery.
The 32-year-old Smith is a nine-year veteran, spending his entire career with the Saints. In his first nine seasons, Smith has been a productive member of the team’s defense. He has accumulated 459 tackles and 67.5 sacks.
He was making a shift to a 3-4 defense as an outside linebacker. While that can be a difficult transition for a player this late into his career, he was making strides.
“It was going well,” Smith said in a text to ESPN’s Ed Werder. “The transition wasn’t that bad. Rob had me in a great position to do well this year, [and] I’m disappointed I won’t be able to help my team out.”
To help with depth, the team has traded for veteran linebacker Parys Haralson from the San Francisco 49ers.
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John Newsome and Anne Woolsey, CNN