The Cowboys shockingly pulled Aldon Smith out of football purgatory a couple weeks ago, and they apparently weren’t the only team in on the former All-Pro. The Broncos pursued Smith and the two sides had mutual interest for a while, sources told Mike Klis of Denver 9 News.
Klis points out that Broncos head coach Vic Fangio was Smith’s defensive coordinator during his best seasons in San Francisco, which explains the connection. Ultimately, financials led Smith to go with Dallas. Klis reports that the Broncos only made a “vet-minimum/incentive-laden offer” to Smith, while the Cowboys gave him a one-year contract with a base value of $2MM and an additional $2MM available in sack incentives.
If Smith had been able to get anywhere close to his old heights, he would’ve formed a scary pass-rushing trio in Denver alongside fellow former first-round picks Von Miller and Bradley Chubb. The seventh overall pick of the 2011 draft, Smith was one of the best defensive players in the league before a series of arrests and substance abuse issues derailed his career. He led the league in sacks in 2012 with 19.5.
He hasn’t played in a game since the 2015 season, so it’ll be very interesting to see what the 30-year-old looks like when he steps on the field. The Broncos lost Derek Wolfe, who had seven sacks last year, in free agency, so Smith would’ve been a nice high-upside addition to bolster the defensive front.
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