Dallas Cowboys’ defensive end Aldon Smith hasn’t played in the NFL since 2015, but it appears that the absence from the game didn’t affect his abilities all that much. At least according to the Cowboys’ head coach Mike McCarthy.
McCarthy had a chat with reporters on Thursday and took the time to share his thoughts about Smith’s performances so far in the training camp.
“I would say that if you walked away from practice you’d say ‘Hey, who the hell was No. 58?'” said McCarthy. “That’s my thought when we walked out on the field for the first time. He looks good. I think his process back has been not a gradual one, but he’s hitting all the targets. I’ve very, very happy with where Aldon is right now.“
Drafted No.7 by San Francisco 49ers in 2011, Smith had an impressive start to his NFL career, collecting 33.5 sacks in his first two seasons. He also managed to collect a Pro Bowl appearance and First-team All-Pro selections in his sophomore year.
However, Smith’s later career was marked with multiple suspensions and which limited him to 27 games in the next three years and got him out of the league by 2016.
Smith inked a one-year contract with Dallas in April, hoping to get his career back on track. So far, things look good, and he could potentially play a big part in Cowboy’s revamped defense if he keeps his focus. McCarthy certainly hopes that will be the case.
“Aldon is off to a very good start,” McCarthy added. “He’s impressive. Still very impressive.”