After 13 games last season, 49ers outside linebacker Aldon Smith had 19.5 sacks, well within range of breaking the NFL single season record of 22.5 by Michael Strahan in 2001 for the New York Giants.
When Smith failed to get another sack in the regular or postseason, it was widely believed to be because defensive lineman Justin Smith, with whom Aldon Smith teamed to overwhelm blockers, was either sidelined or diminished by torn triceps injury.
However, Aldon Smith apparently had more problems than the absence of Justin Smith.
According to NFL Network, Aldon Smith reportedly underwent shoulder surgery to repair a torn labrum "three or four weeks ago." The injury wasn't announced during the season, but Aldon Smith was on the official injury report starting in Week 12 with a nonspecific shoulder injury.
The team has yet to make an official announcement on Aldon Smith's injury or surgery. However, Smith was seen in the Bay Area a few weeks ago wearing a shoulder sling and there are reports he was seen this week without the sling.
Meanwhile, Justin Smith's torn triceps injury was well known, as was his surgery. He missed the final two regular season games, then returned to take part in the two playoff games and the Super Bowl. He was obviously not 100 percent in those postseason appearances.
After surgery at Stanford Hospital shortly after the Super Bowl, Justin Smith went home to Missouri and is now in the middle of a three-month rehab period.