Rams general manager Les Snead discussed the decision to trade Smith and how Hunter fits into the offense with Steve Wyche on NFL Network's "NFL AM" on Wednesday.
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"I think in that case, Barry Richardson, who we signed in the offseason had come in and won the right tackle job. At that point in time, we were looking for a role player, a player that would basically be our 'swing' offensive tackle and jumbo tight end," Snead said. "So we're going to ask that player to not only play, but learn all three positions. And that's what we thought Wayne Hunter would do for us. He's very familiar with our offense with (offensive coordinator) Brian Schottenheimer, so it was a nice piece of the puzzle for us in a certain, specific role.
Smith was due $4 million in fully guaranteed base salary that contained no offsets, while Hunter is due $2.45 million in fully guaranteed base salary. The $1.55 million signing bonus the Rams paid Smith helps to balance out the financial aspects of the trade, though according to a source with knowledge of Smith's contract, he still has an additional $1 million available in playing-time and team-performance incentives this season.