Saints free agent Tre’Quan Smith never lived up to the hype

New Orleans Saints wide receiver Tre'Quan Smith - Mandatory Credit: Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports
New Orleans Saints wide receiver Tre'Quan Smith - Mandatory Credit: Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports /

One New Orleans Saints free agent that isn’t getting discussed much is wide receiver, Tre’Quan Smith. NOLA spent a third-round pick on Smith in the 2018 NFL Draft after he tore things up at Central Florida.

The expectation was that Smith could come into this offense and eventually be Michael Thomas’ right-hand man but that never came to fruition, sadly.

Smith needed a big year in 2021 and didn’t come through in the clutch. A good season would have landed him a massive contract and given the Saints a solid receiver in a season where they could have desperately used one.

Instead, Smith totaled just 32 catches for 377 yards and three touchdowns through 11 games. He entered the season as a hopeful WR2 and ended up being maybe a WR3, but closer to WR4. New Orleans got more production out of Marquez Callaway, who went undrafted two years ago.

Will the Saints move on from free agent Tre’Quan Smith?

Despite the lackluster production, I wouldn’t be surprised if Smith stays in New Orleans to be perfectly honest. He’s still incredibly young, having just turned 26 in January and it’s hard not to believe there’s more in the tank from Smith.

NOLA should go after a wide receiver in the first two rounds of the draft and if they do, they’ll have that pick, Thomas, Callaway, Deonte Harris, and Lil’Jordan Humphrey, who’s an exclusive-rights free agent. That’s a pretty good crop right there, so re-signing Smith isn’t a necessity but could help provide depth.

More than likely, Smith goes to a team where he can carve out a solid role as a WR3/4, which he might not be able to do in New Orleans. A contending team such as the Bengals, Bills, or Chiefs could make a lot of sense for Smith or he could go to a bad team like the Lions and Jaguars and try to make some magic happen there.

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I’ll be curious to see what the future holds for Tre’Quan Smith. Do you think he’ll return to New Orleans or sign elsewhere?