The Dallas Cowboys have reportedly signed Aldon Smith. The deal is for one year and worth $4 million. The deal is yet to be official as Smith is currently in the process of reinstatement. The 30-year-old defensive end has not played since 2015 due to struggles with legal issues over the years.
The Cowboys have a history of giving second chances to players who’ve been known for getting into trouble constantly. The list includes the likes of Adam “Pacman” Jones, Rolando McClain, Greg Hardy, Randy Gregory, Tank Johnson, and Charles Haley.
Smith was the seventh overall pick in the 2011 NFL Draft by the San Francisco 49ers. After being released in 2014, he was signed by the Raiders, appearing in nine games in 2015. In over 55 career games, he has over 45 quarterback sacks. No doubt, he’s a very talented player.
What To Make Of The Signing?
The Cowboys lost DE Robert Quinn to the Chicago Bears in free agency. The Cowboys need someone to fill in that void. Smith is a very good choice and here’s why; Jim Tomsula, the current defensive line coach for Dallas coached Smith from 2011 to 2014. For both Smith and Tomsula, it’s good to have some familiarity.
Furthermore, during those four years, Smith recorded 44 sacks in a 50-game span. So, if Smith receives reinstatement to the league, this signing can work out well if Smith is and stays healthy, puts up positive results on the field, and most importantly if he stays out of trouble.
At this point, there are simply no guarantees. In addition, the contract itself has no guaranteed money. The Cowboys are taking similar actions as they did when signed Greg Hardy in 2015. Dallas has already made some adjustments to their defensive line by DT Gerald McCoy and Dontari Poe. Smith ought to fit perfectly with the likes of DeMarcus Lawrence, McCoy, Poe, and Antwaun Woods. However, it’s up to Smith to make this move work out. But for now, it depends on he receives reinstatement to the league.
In addition, the Cowboys are hopeful for DE Randy Gregory to receives reinstatement as it adds more depth to the line. However, in Gregory’s case, if he’s reinstated, the Cowboys need to take a similar approach to him as they did with Smith; a non-guaranteed contract. They can’t risk anything with a player with a bad reputation of getting in trouble.
The 2020 NFL Draft is a little over three weeks away. The Cowboys have the 17th pick. The Cowboys are on a mission to rectify a disastrous 2019 season. Starting with a complete change in the coaching staff to make some good moves in free agency, the Cowboys are making progress.
Dallas’ next move is in the first round of the draft. It’s 2020 and Dallas wants to begin a new era of success.