While Aldon Smith continues to serve his indefinite suspension from the NFL, his court case stemming from an August 2015 arrest has been resolved. According to a report by TMZ, Smith pleaded no contest to hit and run and as a result of the plea deal, the DUI charges have been dropped.
He has been sentenced to 20 days in jail, with the judge allowing him to serve his sentence in a residential treatment facility. As part of the plea, he is also not allowed to go to bars or any place where alcohol is primarily sold.
How this will affect when or if commissioner Roger Goodell reinstates Smith remains to be seen.
The Raiders linebacker has been banished from the NFL since November of the 2015 season for repeated violations of the league’s policy on substance abuse. What was initially called a minimum 1-year ban is now approaching two years.
The length of the suspension has always been contingent upon Smith’s behavior, not the results of any court cases, and has been completely at Goodell’s discretion. And Smith has seemingly given Goodell every reason to sit on his hands with regards to the timeline of his reinstatement decision.
Smith’s use of social media has been much of his undoing. First it was a video that surfaced which appeared to show him smoking a joint. Then it was a video of him at a restaurant, pretty obviously not sober, talking about how he’s back and no one can stop him. And finally it was his being detained at a police station as the passenger in a car that struck a police cruiser, after which media on hand asked him questions about it and he was again visibly wasted.
I wouldn’t put any hope in him returning this season. If he can stay out of the spotlight for a while, maybe think about the possibility of him being reinstated during the offseason.
The Raiders have him under contract for two years and that tolls each season he is out of football, which means it doesn’t start until he is reinstated.