Aldon Smith Released from Seahawks Contract Ahead of Preseason Week 1

Mike Chiari@@mikechiariFeatured Columnist IVAugust 11, 2021

Seattle Seahawks defensive end Aldon Smith talks to reporters after NFL football practice Saturday, July 31, 2021, in Renton, Wash. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)
AP Photo/Ted S. Warren

The Seattle Seahawks released veteran pass-rusher Aldon Smith on Wednesday, a move that opens up a spot on the team's 90-man roster.

NFL Network's Mike Garafolo initially reported the news.

Smith, 31, signed a one-year contract with the Seahawks in April after spending the 2020 season with the Dallas Cowboys.

Just days after signing with the Seahawks, Smith was booked on a battery charge in Louisiana after he allegedly choked someone until they were unconscious at a coffee shop.

Since entering the NFL in 2011 as the No. 7 overall draft pick by the San Francisco 49ers, Smith has been suspended multiple times.

He was arrested on DUI charges more than once, was arrested for allegedly making false bomb threats at Los Angeles International Airport in 2014 (no charges were filed), was arrested and charged with a hit-and-run in 2015 and pleaded no-contest to violating a court order and false imprisonment in 2018 as part of a domestic violence case. 

He missed time while with the Niners in 2013 while going to alcohol addiction rehabilitation, was suspended for part of the 2014 season and then was suspended for the entire 2016 and 2017 seasons while with the then-Oakland Raiders. He was out of the league in 2018 and '19 and was reinstated by the NFL in May 2020. 

Smith returned last season to play for the Cowboys, and he was fairly productive, finishing with 48 tackles and five sacks in 16 games.

Smith reached double-digit sacks in each of his first two NFL seasons, with 14.0 in 2011 and 19.5 in 2012. He was also named a Pro Bowler and first-team All-Pro in 2012 for the only time in his career.

Smith has appeared in 75 career regular-season games, racking up 228 tackles, 52.5 sacks and six forced fumbles.

He was viewed as a potential pass-rushing option for a Seahawks team that somewhat surprisingly ranked seventh in the NFL in sacks last season despite not having any stars at defensive end.

Safety Jamal Adams is back after leading the team with 9.5 sacks last season, while the likes of Carlos Dunlap, Benson Mayowa, L.J. Collier and Kerry Hyder all figure to play significant roles as well when it comes to pressuring the quarterback.

Seattle's first opportunity to unleash its pass rush will come Saturday when it faces the Las Vegas Raiders on the road in its preseason opener.