The Patriots are getting a seventh-round draft pick back in return.
Smith, 27, originally arrived in New England as part of the team’s free agency spending spree in 2021. Signing a four-year, $50 million contract, he was expected to play a prominent role in the team’s offense.
However, that never materialized. In his two seasons as a Patriot, Smith appeared in 31 games and caught just 55 passes for 539 yards and a single touchdown. He never quite found his footing with the club, and effectively spent both seasons as the No. 2 tight end behind fellow 2021 free agency addition Hunter Henry.
Now, only Henry remains out of the two. Smith, meanwhile, is headed to Atlanta and will take the remaining two years of his contract with him.
For the Patriots, trading him adds roughly $3.6 million to the salary cap. However, the move also creates a dead money charge of $12.8 million.