Aldon Smith has been an impact player for the San Francisco 49ers since he first entered the league in 2011. His total of 42 sacks after three seasons is third all time to only Reggie White (52) and Derrick Thomas (43.5). It appeared that the Niner’s would have to make a decision on whether or not to offer Smith a long term contract after the 2014 season because his rookie deal was due to expire. Now, it looks like the team has another alternative.
The 49ers have until May 3rd to exercise a fifth-year option on Smith’s rookie contract that would lock the defender up through 2015. Smith’s 2015 salary would then equal the 2014 transition tag for linebacker’s which is expected to be about $9.25 million dollars.
Exercising the option gives the 49ers another season to determine whether or not Smith is someone they want to invest in long term. Despite his talents, Smith has battled off the field issues and missed five games in 2013 to enter a rehab clinic for substance abuse. He also still faces a March 13th court date for weapons charges stemming from a party at his home in 2012.
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