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Daryl Smith returning to Ravens

Daryl Smith has another reason to celebrate Friday.

On the same day he turned 32, the inside linebacker agreed to terms with the Baltimore Ravens on a four-year contract that will keep him in Baltimore.

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The deal is reportedly worth $16.1 million.

"I'm really just fired up," Smith said. "I knew I wanted to be back, and I'm happy we could come to an agreement so I could get back in there for four years."

Smith tested the free agent market, but the Ravens were hopeful of retaining him throughout the process.

"There are a lot of smiles around the building today after we got a commitment from Daryl Smith to stay a Raven," Baltimore general manager Ozzie Newsome said in a statement.

The Ravens signed Smith last year after he spent the first nine seasons of his career with the Jacksonville Jaguars. He led Baltimore with 123 tackles and also had five sacks, three interceptions and two forced fumbles.

Smith also had 19 pass deflections, a Ravens franchise record for a linebacker.

Baltimore coach John Harbaugh said earlier this offseason that the team's top priority was retaining its own free agents, and Smith will become the fifth player to re-sign with the Ravens since Feb. 28.

He joins tight end Dennis Pitta, left tackle Eugene Monroe, wide receiver Jacoby Jones and reserve safety Jeromy Miles.

Had Smith not re-signed, Baltimore would have been left with Josh Bynes, Arthur Brown and Albert McClellan as the only inside linebackers on its roster. None of those three has ever been a full-time starter in the NFL.

"He fills a need for us at a high level," Newsome said of Smith. "Just look at his production last season. Plus, he gave us leadership and maturity. He's tough. He's consistent. He's intelligent. And he brings his lunch pail to work every day."

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