ALLEN PARK, Mich. -- Kevin Smith was in good company for his morning workout Tuesday, and when it was over he sent word that he was happy to be heading back to Detroit to continue his career with the Lions.
Just finished a great workout with frank gore and matt forte and just found out I will be back in the d next year, Smith wrote on his Twitter account.
Smith, who gave the Lions at lift at running back when he was signed during the season, agreed to terms on a contract Tuesday. The length and financial terms were not immediately available.
Gore is starting running back for the 49ers, and Forte is a starter in Chicago, where he is embroiled in a contract dispute.
The Lions will go to training camp with three young tailbacks on the roster, but two of them have injury questions.
Jahvid Best, a first-round draft pick in 2010, played only 6 games last season after sustaining his second concussion of the year in Game 6. Mikel Leshoure, a second-round draft pick last year out of Illinois, missed the season because of a torn Achilles sustained in the first week of training camp.
Whether the Lions add another running back in next months draft or free-agency remains to be seen.
At least for now, Smith knows hell have an opportunity to compete for a job in training camp.
For the second straight year, Smith went into the offseason with uncertainty about his career.
He was a third-round draft pick by the Lions in 2008, but was not tendered a contract when he became a restricted free agent after the 2010 season. Smith had numerous injuries, and no team signed him at the start of last season.
When injuries shredded the running back position, the Lions signed Smith before Game 9 -- a 27-15 loss at Chicago.
Smith exploded the next week in a 49-35 win over Carolina at Ford Field. Although he didnt start, rushed for 140 yards and 2 touchdowns and added 4 receptions for 61 yards and another score.
His performance earned him the NFC Offensive Player of the Week award.
Smith wound up playing 7 games with 4 starts in the regular season. He also started in the Lions loss to New Orleans in the NFC wild-card playoff round.
In the regular season, Smith carried 72 times for 356 yards and 4 TDs. He averaged 4.9 yards per carry. He added 22 catches for 179 yards and 3 TDs.
Smith had a knack for finding the end zone. In 40 career games, he has scored 20 TDs -- 16 rushing and 4 on receptions.