After a hectic offseason, Oakland Raiders linebacker Aldon Smith is finally back on the football field. Life is about to get worse for Smith. According to Adam Schefter, NFL announced today that the league has suspended him for one year for violating the NFL substance abuse policy. For every game that Smith misses he will be losing $323,529 dollars. Smith is a repeat offender of off field troubles ever since coming into the league in 2011.
In nine games this season, Smith has recorded 28 tackles and 3.5 sacks. With everything Smith has been going through, he has been having a nice start to the season for Raiders. He showed some flashes of the pass rushing ability, that he had in San Francisco. Where he had double digit sacks, in his first two seasons with the team before the team cut him this past offseason after an incident. Oakland signed him for pass rushing depth, giving him a chance even though Smith has a bad reputation in the league .
Even though Smith hasn’t been as effective as he was his first two seasons , there’s still a lot to like about him. He proved that he can get to the quarterback quickly and he has good speed to get pressure on the quarterback. The problem with Smith is he has a reputation of getting arrested and suspended and getting into trouble a lot. So when he is not causing trouble he is a really good player.
Oakland is losing a big part of the pass rush, with Smith being suspended. The pass rush will still be good, but it will be taking a huge hit now that Smith is gone. Team still has Khalil Mack and others that can fill in for him and make an impact on the Raiders defense. The team is in the middle of a playoff push right now, so this is the worst time this season to lose Smith.
On the Smith side of things, this is starting to become a trend for him. So during this time off, Smith needs to get his head straight fixing himself to make sure that he does not make the same mistakes that he is making right now off the field. Once he fixes what he has done off the field. Smith can then focus on football and dominating every Sunday.
One question that will be answered during all of this is? Will Oakland Raiders be willing to bring back Smith, since the team only signed him to a one year deal this offseason. One thing the team will have to do before making this decision, is making sure that Smith is all clean and not causing any trouble. Since football wise, it is obvious the team should resign him. The off the field problems will be something that the team will have to think about, when offseason comes around and its time to decide if the team should bring him back.