Roquan Smith Explains Jersey Number Change to Zero

Baltimore Ravens linebacker Roquan Smith (18) in action during the second half of an NFL football game against the Denver Broncos, Sunday, Dec. 4, 2022, in Baltimore.

When Roquan Smith zeroes in to make a tackle next season, opponents will see No. 0 staring them in the face.

The Ravens' All-Pro inside linebacker has decided to change from No. 18 to No. 0 next season, becoming the first player in franchise history to wear No. 0.

Smith said he's making the jersey change because he sees the 2023 season as a fresh start, in his first full season with the Ravens after being traded from the Bears to Baltimore midway through the 2022 season.

In March, NFL owners approved a proposal to allow all position groups except offensive and defensive linemen to wear No. 0, opening the door for Smith to make the switch.

This won't be the first jersey change for Smith, who wore No. 58 when he played for the Bears and No. 3 when he played at Georgia.

However, wearing a signature jersey like No. 0 seems fitting for Smith, a relentless player who has averaged 138.6 tackles per year during his five NFL seasons.

"I look at the No. 0 as a new beginning — continuing to build a foundation of greatness with the start of a new season, "Smith said. "A strong and solid foundation is what you must have before anything else, and you must be willing to work for what comes next. This is my first start of a season with the Ravens, and I see no better number that represents that journey to greatness."

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