Smith, 30, was as good as anyone at rushing the passer in his first two seasons after the 49ers made him the seventh overall choice in the 2011 draft. He had 33.5 sacks in his first 32 games and 42 in his first 43.
But he has not played since 2015.
“I haven’t been through that with a player,” Cowboys coach Mike McCarthy said in a conference call with beat reporters Wednesday. “I think the most important thing I can do as a coach to make sure we give all of our guys, Aldon included, the foundation to expect success and try not to do too much, too fast.”
McCarthy first met Smith just before the Cowboys hired him in January while the coach was working out at Jay Glazer’s Unbreakable gym in Los Angeles.
“He is such an impressive young man and his path to Dallas is special and unique, so just thankful and blessed to be a part of this opportunity with him,” McCarthy said. “You know, he wants to get back professionally and be productive. He’s in great physical shape. It will be exciting to see him get out there for the first time. He’s bigger and stronger than he was when we had a chance to compete against him there when he was with the 49ers obviously playing at an elite level. So, I think it will be exciting to see him on the field and get back into it. He’s in a great place and very thankful for him being a part of the Dallas Cowboys.”
Mike McCarthy: Aldon Smith “bigger and stronger” than he was with 49ers originally appeared on Pro Football Talk