Smith writes: “Oh y’all thght [sic] it was a game!!! You say you wanna sit & get ya life right. . . they say nah […] you pay me!!!”
However, Smith did add: “It’s still love!!”
Smith announced last month that he will be sitting out the 2019 season.
“It was said to me from a great coach, that in order for the man to be his best, he must get his world in order,” Smith wrote. “At this time I must take time away from the game & get my world in order. I must give this time back to myself, my family, & my health.
“I appreciate all the support I will & will not get. I just ask y’all respect my decision to not play football this season.”
It’s clearly up to the Jaguars whether to impose fines for any player not participating in mandatory workouts. It’s possible that the team could withhold this money and pay it back to him at a later point.
Jacksonville has said that they support Smith while he’s away from the team and will do what they can to help him:
“We will not have a comment about Telvin Smith’s statement at this time. We need to have a conversation with Telvin to understand the situation and the circumstances.
“If there is a way we can support him we need to understand that.”
Smith, 28, is a former fifth-round pick by the Jaguars in the 2014 NFL Draft. He was in the final year of a four-year, $2,431,052 rookie contract when the Jaguars signed him to a four-year, $50 million extension in 2017.
Smith stands to make base salaries of $9.75 million and $10 million over the next two years of the agreement.
In 2018, Smith appeared in all 16 games for the Jaguars and recorded 134 tackles, one sack, two interceptions, a defensive touchdown, a forced fumble, a recovery and two pass defenses. Pro Football Focus has him rated as the No. 44 linebacker out of 92 qualifying players.
We’ll have more regarding Smith as the news is available.