Sven spotted this as well and I wanted to get it up on the front. The 49ers have agreed to terms with Justin Smith. Although they haven't officially signed the deal, MM is reporting Smith's agent indicated terms were agreed to at 6 years and $45 million, with $20 million in guarantees. Smith will get $32.5 million over the first four years of the deal.
From MM's blog:
Once Smith signs on the dotted line, this will officially become a very, very strong free-agent signing at a position of need. I don't believe Smith will play outside linebacker. I've learned his playing weight is 280 pounds. He should play defensive end because that is what he does. You don't pay a guy this kind of money and have him do something he's never done. The question is, will Smith be doing this in a 3-4 or a 4-3?
I'm curios to see if they go with the 3-3 with an elephant that was mentioned previously. I'm trying to find more details on how that position works. Anybody who knows how it works, feel free to discuss in the comments. Even with the dollars in play here, the 49ers have significantly upgraded the defense. I'll have more thoughts later.
EDITOR'S UPDATE 10:52AM - Matt Barrow spoke with a Cincinnati beat writer in his blog today:
EDITOR'S UPDATE 12:50PM - More info from Matt Barrows: The 49ers confirmed that he will play right defensive end and would slide inside to tackle on passing downs. With good-looking youngster Ray McDonald also at right end, this is more evidence that Marques Douglas will not be back. I definitely foresee a front page post on Ray McDonald before the draft considering defensive line has been a position of need up to this point. I liked what I saw at the end of last year and will have more to say on that in the near future.
EDITOR'S UPDATE 2:45PM - MM has put up some info from the conference call that was just held with Justin Smith and Bay Area media. Some of the highlights:
On canceling other visits: ...watching the defense and seeing where the team is and where it can go. He was impressed with defensive coordinator Greg Manusky. Top to bottom it's a first-class organization. He said it was a no-brainer.