Oakland Raiders linebacker Aldon Smith received a year-long suspension for violating the NFL’s Policy and Program on Substance Abuse, per multiple reports.
The suspension comes almost four months after an alleged hit-and-run incident which lead to him pleading not guilty for hit-and-run, drunken driving and vandalism, charges, in September.
Here are statements from the NFL, the Raiders and Aldon Smith on Smith’s one-year suspension … pic.twitter.com/iHifEsR2U7
— Albert Breer (@AlbertBreer) November 18, 2015
Smith signed with the Raiders days before the opening game. Smith joined the team after several run-ins with the law during his tenure as a San Francisco 49er. Smith served a 9 game suspension in the beginning of the 2014 season.
The 25-year-old pass rusher will be a free agent after the season. However, signs point to the Raiders having him in long-term plans.
The #Raiders are going to stick with Aldon Smith through his suspension, I’m told. They were expecting this to come down.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) November 17, 2015
Still, the one-year reportedly caught Smith off-guard.
Aldon Smith didn’t talk to reporters before he left building, clearly upset and surprised at 1-year suspension
— Vic Tafur (@VicTafur) November 17, 2015
Smith can apply for reinstatement 60 days before the calendar-long suspension is completed.
Apparently, quarterback Derek Carr would welcome him back.
— Derek Carr (@derekcarrqb) November 18, 2015
Nonetheless, the suspension could not have come at a worst time for the Raiders. The 4-5 team is weathering a two-game losing streak, but they are alive in the AFC Wild Card hunt.
With Smith, the Raiders already ranked No. 28 in total yards and pass defense.
Smith was developing into a pass-rushing compliment across from Khalil Mack. Now, the Raiders pass rush and secondary will miss Smith’s 3.5 sacks and multiple quarterback hurries.
Oakland will begin trying to replace Smith’s impact on Nov. 22 against the Detroit Lions.
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