BALTIMORE (WJZ) — For many Ravens fans, it was a gut punch they knew was coming. Wide receiver Torrey Smith announced he’s leaving the team.
Derek Valcourt has more on the heartfelt goodbye from the free agent who is about to sign with another team.
Speculation is that Smith will be heading to play for the San Francisco 49ers. We won’t know that until Tuesday. For now, many fans are taking hard the loss of such a beloved player.
In a lengthy blog titled “Dear Baltimore,” Torrey Smith confirms he “will be playing for a different organization,” but says, “At heart, I will always be a Raven.”
He thanks the Ravens coaches, players and especially the fans, adding, “Baltimore will continue to be my home in the off-season and when my career is done,” stressing “My commitment to this city is for life.”
WJZ Radio 107.5 the Fan’s Steve Davis explains the team can’t afford to keep Smith.
“This is all salary cap. One of the issues for the Ravens is because they are so good at picking and developing players and they end up being very good and they become very expensive,” Davis said.
The former Maryland Terp was drafted in 2011 and during the next four seasons scored 30 touchdowns and helped take the team to a successful Super Bowl victory.
Fans Tweeted their love with pics. Actor and Baltimore native Josh Charles Tweeted “This one hurts” but wished Smith nothing but the best.
But radio callers had mixed reactions on Smith’s departure.
“I’m not upset that Torrey’s gone. Torrey to me is a one-trick pony. He’s fast but he doesn’t run good routes,” said one caller.
“Torrey was a great receiver for us, man, and he made some incredible catches to help win the Super Bowl, get to the playoffs,” said another caller.
Off the field, Smith embraced social media, allowing fans a glimpse into his personal life. He recently opened up in a WJZ interview about the birth of his first baby.
“We won the Super Bowl. Don’t get me wrong, it was one of the best experiences I’ve ever had, but there’s a different kind of emotional connection I have with watching him,” he said.
He launched the Torrey Smith Foundation to help at risk youth and made frequent appearances to benefit charities.
Smith was born and raised in Virginia and said becoming a Raven was one of his life’s dreams come true.