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Eric DeCosta: Roquan Smith has proven he can surpass the standard of defense in Baltimore

The Ravens are set for a rematch with the Bengals on Wild Card Weekend, but Lamar Jackson's ability to play remains a question mark -- especially considering his lack of a long-term contract.

What was reported on Tuesday has now become official.

The Ravens announced linebacker Roquan Smith has signed a five-year extension, putting him under contract with Baltimore through the 2027 season.

“We are so excited to announce a five-year extension with Roquan Smith,” Ravens General Manager Eric DeCosta said in a statement. “Since he’s been here, Roquan has been a leader on and off the field, impressing us with his attitude and desire to be [a] great player and teammate every day. There is certainly a standard of defense in Baltimore, and Roquan has proven that he can surpass that lofty mark. Congratulations to Roquan and his family on this special day!”

The Ravens acquired Smith from the Bears in October. He became an immediate key member of Baltimore’s defense, recording 86 tackles, seven tackles for loss, an interception, 2.0 sacks, and three passes defensed in his nine games.

The No. 8 overall pick in 2018, Smith has tallied 693 total tackles, 54 tackles for loss, 18.5 sacks, and eight interceptions in his 78 career games.