Aldon Smith has impressed Cowboys teammates, including Tyron Smith, who doesn’t think he’s lost a step
Most players who were out of the game for five years would accept the end of their careers. The ones who didn’t probably wouldn’t have the ability to pick up where they left off with anyways. Neither is the case for the Cowboys Aldon Smith.
After a five-year absence from the NFL stemming from a string of substance abuse and off-the-field troubles, Smith is making a big impression at Cowboys training camp.
All-Pro offensive tackle Tyron Smith called the other Smith a “heck of a player,” according to Jon Machota of The Athletic.
“It doesn’t look like he’s lost a step at all. Still the same guy. Still has the talent. Still has the work ethic. He brings it every day,” Smith said. “It’s kinda difficult to describe him because you never know what (move) he’s gonna bring to you.”
If Aldon Smith hasn’t “lost a step,” he could be an incredible comeback story for the Cowboys.
There’s a remarkable lack of wear on Smith’s body, despite being 30 years old. He only played in two seasons in college and appeared in 59 games over five years in the pros. He’ll need to shake off some rust after a five-year layoff, but the potential to bolster Dallas’ pass rush is clear. Tyron Smith would be able to assess that better than anyone as one of the top offensive linemen in the NFL.
Smith was the seventh-overall pick of the San Francisco 49ers in the 2011 NFL Draft. His career started brightly as could be. He was voted to the 2011 NFL All-Rookie Team and achieved First-Team All-Pro status by 2012. In those first two years, he posted 14 sacks as a situation pass rusher then 19 sacks as a starter.
With such talent at his fingertips, Smith should have gone on to take the league by storm. Instead, his life and career spiraled with a DUI and rehab stint in 2013, a nine-game suspension from the league in 2014 and another year-long suspension for a hit-and-run in 2015. His bids to return to the NFL after that were undercut by further legal troubles, including an alleged domestic violence incident.
The Cowboys went out on a limb to bring Smith back into the league in April, signing him to a one-year deal.