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Lee Smith signs three-year deal with Oakland Raiders

The first domino has fallen in a potential Buffalo Bills tight end overhaul: Lee Smith has signed a free agent deal with the Oakland Raiders.

Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

Buffalo Bills reserve tight end Lee Smith has agreed to a three-year deal worth over $9 million with the Oakland Raiders, reports ESPN's Adam Caplan.

Smith spent the last four seasons serving as the Bills' blocking tight end, having come to Buffalo as a rookie in 2011 after the New England Patriots - who made him a fifth-round pick out of Marshall - placed him on waivers. In his four seasons with the Bills, Smith played a bit role on offense as a blocker while catching 20 passes for 144 yards and three touchdowns.

The Bills are undergoing an offensive transformation under new coaches Rex Ryan and Greg Roman, who are installing a run-heavy system in Buffalo. That seems ideal for a player of Smith's talents, but the Bills are dead set on improving at that position - hence their full-court press on Charles Clay - and were never going to pay a reserve tight end $3 million per season.