Former 49ers and Raiders pass rusher Aldon Smith last played in 2015. In 2020, he’s trying to play again.
Jim Trotter of NFL Media reports that Smith is “in the process” of applying for reinstatement.
The seventh overall pick in the 2011 draft, Smith has served multiple suspensions under both the substance-abuse policy and the Personal Conduct Policy. His latest suspension arose from an alleged hit-and-run, DUI, and vandalism incident in 2015.
The new CBA, if ratified, relaxes the substance-abuse policy. However, it does not change the procedures for reinstatement, leaving the decision within the sole discretion of the Commissioner, with no timeline or any other rules for the final decision to be made by Roger Goodell.
Smith took the league by storm early in his career, with 33.5 sacks in his first 32 regular-season games, and 42 in his first 43. But the 49ers released Smith during the 2014 season, his fourth in the league.
The following year, Smith joined the Raiders. His most recent suspension happened during the 2015 season, his first and only in Oakland.
Still only 30, Smith could have some productive years left. But first he’s got to get back in. And then he has to find a way to stay there.