For Aldon Smith, this one hurts.
For the 49er Faithful, this one hurts.
For the team, this one hurts.
One of the preeminent pass rushers in the league is gone until Week 11 against the New York Giants. Smith, so gifted on the field, but so troubled away from it, is now paying a steep price for multiple off-the-field transgressions, including a felony weapons charge and a DUI.
I’ve been on record saying I felt it was time for Aldon to be shown the door last year, but Baalke and Co. elected to keep him, hence why I’m plugging away on a keyboard and he’s the GM of one of the best teams in football. Unfortunately, it seems Aldon’s five game hiatus last season had zero impact on Commissioner Roger Goodell’s ruling.
The Niners, already depleted in the linebacking corps without NaVarro Bowman, will now be without arguably their best pass rusher. It will be up to Corey Lemonier and Dan Skuta to fill the hole left by Smith, although they were up to the task last season, as San Francisco went 5-0 without number 99.
While I expect the 49ers to be able to weather the storm without him, not having Smith in the lineup obviously hurts the back seven. The Niners have to find a way to cope with the loss, and, hopefully for Aldon, along with continued sobriety, this is the first step on the successful road to recovery.
Note: Smith can still attend team meetings at the 49ers practice facility while serving his suspension
You can follow me on Twitter @mrandyparker