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Dallas Cowboys DE Aldon Smith reinstated by the NFL

The veteran pass rusher is now eligible to take part in all team activities.
Credit: AP Photo/Ben Margot
Oakland Raiders linebacker Aldon Smith (99) sits on the bench during an NFL football game against the Cincinnati Bengals in Oakland, Calif., Sunday, Sept. 13, 2015.

Dallas Cowboys defensive end Aldon Smith has been officially reinstated by the NFL, the league confirmed to WFAA Wednesday afternoon. The veteran pass rusher is now eligible to take part in all team activities.

Smith signed with the Cowboys in early April after having been out of the league for nearly five years. He last played in the NFL in November of 2015, before being forced to sit out the 2016 and 2017 seasons due to legal issues.

Smith spent his first four seasons with the San Francisco 49ers, during which time he was named a Pro Bowler and a first-team All-Pro in 2012. He broke Reggie White’s record for fastest to record his 30th sack, doing so in his 27th NFL game. In 2012 alone, he had 19.5 sacks, 66 tackles, three forced fumbles and an interception, all on a 49ers team that made it to the Super Bowl. He was also on the roster for the Oakland Raiders from 2015-2017.

After 2012, Smith’s legal issues ramped up, and he served multiple suspensions by the NFL, for violations of the substance abuse and personal conduct policies.

He applied for reinstatement to the league in 2016, but never received it, sitting out all of 2016 and 2017, before leaving the league for 2018-2019. 

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