The San Francisco 49ers 2013 season isn’t going as planned. After being arrested for driving under the influence Friday morning, all pro linebacker Aldon Smith has taken an “indefinite leave” from the team to seek professional help.
Smith played in the 49ers 27-7 loss to the Indianapolis Colts at home Sunday afternoon. The beat down was the second in a row for the team that almost won the Super Bowl in 2012.
It was reported after the game that Smith would seek rehab in an effort to fight his personal demons. The 49ers support Smith’s efforts to fight what is assumed to be a substance abuse problem. Team President Jed York released this statement:
“I’ll support our players as long as they’re willing to work towards getting better, and being better teammates, and being better member of the community,” York said. “And I believe Aldon wants to do that. And I will support him and I will stand by him as long as that’s what he’s willing to do … I believe Aldon wants to tackle this problem and we’re going to do everything we can do to help him with this.”
Aldon Smith has not only taken an “indefinite leave” from San Francisco, but has also been placed on the team’s non football injury list (NFI) and will miss at least one month. The 49ers have promised not to bring Smith back until he is cleared by a doctor as healthy.
The move to get Aldon Smith into rehab is a smart one. He’s only 23-years-old and needs to clear up his personal issues now to save a promising career. No player has ever recorded more sacks in their first two season than Smith. He is a rare talent.
The loss, while necessary, is huge for the 49ers. Aldon Smith is dominant on the line of scrimmage and will be hard to replace him.
Here’s to hoping the the best for the young man going through a very public rough patch.
[image via Wikimedia Commons]