FOXBORO, Mass. - The New England Patriots announced the signing of veteran free agent running back Antowain Smith. Terms of the contract were not disclosed.
Smith, 29, started 28 of 57 games in four seasons with the Buffalo Bills and rushed for 2,932 yards and 26 touchdowns. He was originally drafted by the Bills in the first round of the 1997 NFL draft with the 23rd overall selection after a stellar senior season at Houston. In 1997, he played in every game and led the team in rushing with 840 yards and eight touchdowns on 194 carries, despite not starting any games. He also caught 28 passes for 177 additional yards. In 1998, he was elevated to a starting position and led the team with 1,124 yards and eight touchdowns on 300 carries. In 1999, he started 11 of 14 games and finished the season with 614 yards and six touchdowns on 165 carries. Last season, he picked up 354 yards on 101 carries and scored four additional touchdowns.
At 6-foot-2 and 228 pounds, Smith joins the Patriots as the biggest of the team's four running backs.