Originally posted on This Given Sunday  |  Last updated 3/1/12

Adam Schefter reported via twitter that the Steelers will be releasing long-time defensive end Aaron Smith.

Smith, who many people expected to retire following the 2011 season, has been with the Steelers since 1999. From 2000 to 2008, Smith was extremely durable, missing just five games in that stretch all of which came in the 2007 season.

His durability has become a serious issue in the past three seasons, however. Since 2009, Smith has played in a total of 15 games, and it became apparent that his time in the NFL was drawing to a close.

In his time with the Steelers, Smith accumulated 44 sacks and 453 tackles, but that's not where his greatest value was. As the defensive end in a 3-4 system, Smith was in charge of setting the Steelers' edge and maintaining his gap assignments while allowing the linebackers to shoot into the backfield and make big plays. It's a role that Smith did extremely effectively in the Steelers' system.

While the move does have a certain shock value to it, the Steelers really aren't losing much by cutting ties with Smith. He hasn't been on the field very often over the past three seasons, and he was set to make $2.1 million in 2012. Really, the move was a no-brainer for the cap-burdened Steelers.

I really don't expect Smith to sign with another team. He was a great defensive end, but he's 35 years old, and coming off of multiple injury laden seasons. Expect him to formally announce his retirement in the somewhat near future.

[follow]

MORE FROM YARDBARKER:
The first time John Randle talked trash in the NFL
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Vikings announce Teddy Bridgewater has a torn ACL

Craig Sager to undergo third bone marrow transplant

Madden 17's live commentary tackles Kaepernick controversy

Nationals' Stephen Strasburg expected to return next week

WATCH: Footage surfaces from Tim Tebow’s baseball workout

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Teddy Bridgewater suffers serious knee injury at practice?

EON Sports strikes VR partnerships with Miami, PSU

Mike Tyson accused of stealing ice cream treat at U.S. Open

Calvin Johnson to join DWTS, but sister says he ‘can’t dance’

Eagles rookie nixes anthem protest after talking to agent

Report: Romo has no ligament damage, to resume training soon

WATCH: Lorenzo Neal on the one move that caused the demise of the Chargers

Teddy Bridgewater injury puts Vikings' plans up in the air

The hottest MLB pitchers headed into September sprint

Kanye West, Saint Pablo Tour and the anti-celebrity

WATCH: John Randle on the first time he talked trash in the NFL

The hottest hitters in MLB heading into September sprint

Who has the most to prove at the US Open?

Vontaze Burfict on Steelers: ‘I don’t give no f—s about them’

Alistair Overeem: Brock Lesnar will never return to UFC

Top five Heisman Trophy candidates for 2016

Five young NFL players set to explode in 2016

A sports history of not standing up for the national anthem

NFL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

WATCH: Lorenzo Neal on the one move that caused the demise of the Chargers

The hottest MLB pitchers headed into September sprint

West-ern Literature: How Kanye's fans find meaning in between the lines

Madden 17's live commentary tackles Kaepernick controversy

Kanye West, Saint Pablo Tour and the anti-celebrity

WATCH: John Randle on the first time he talked trash in the NFL

The hottest hitters in MLB heading into September sprint

Who has the most to prove at the US Open?

A sports history of not standing up for the national anthem

Premier League notebook: The love affair at Man U

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker