The fifth-year option will cost the Bears $9.735 million fully guaranteed for the 2022 season, per Over The Cap. This will not prevent the two parties from negotiating an extension over the next year or so.
Smith will look to capitalize on a 2020 season that netted him career-highs in both tackles and tackles for loss.
Smith, 24, was the eighth-overall selection in the 2018 NFL Draft by the Chicago Bears. He’s entering the fourth year of a four-year, $18.477 million dollar rookie contract with the Bears that included a $11.517 million dollar signing bonus.
In 2020, Smith appeared in all 16 games, tallying 139 total tackles, four sacks, two interceptions, and one forced fumble. Pro Football Focus had him rated as the No. 17 linebacker out of 83 qualifying players.