On November 17, 2015 Oakland Raiders defensive end Aldon Smith was suspended for a year for violating the NFL’s substance abuse policy after an Aug. 2015 arrest on charges of drunken driving, hit and run and vandalism, his fifth run-in with the law of his NFL career.
Smith entered himself into a rehabilitation treatment facility in July, and has recently been working out to get himself ready to return to playing for the Raiders when he gets reinstated.
While Thursday is the first day he is eligible to be reinstated, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell does not have to make a decision right away.
When he will make a decision remains unknown, but Smith recently said that he will not take no for an answer in regards to his reinstatement, via Jimmy Durkin of EastBayTimes.com:
“I’m going to speak for myself because I’m in that situation,” Smith said. “I won’t take no for answer. I won’t be defeated. You’ve got to understand that it’s your life. You control it. You can’t let nobody else control it. It doesn’t matter what they try to do to you. And most importantly, God put you here for a reason so make the best out of your life, your situation and be a blessing to somebody else and show the world what you’re worth.”
Smith would definitely be an upgrade for a Raiders pass rush that is one of the worst in the league. The 27-year-old had 33.5 sacks in his first two career seasons while with the San Francisco 49ers, the most by any player in their first two season in NFL history.
He was named to the NFC Pro Bowl team and a First Team All-Pro is 2012 when he had 19.5 sacks, second in the NFL behind only J.J. Watt of the Houston Texans.
Smith signed a one-year deal with the Raiders before last season and he had 3.5 sacks in nine games last year with the Raiders before the ban. The Raiders then re-signed him this past April.