Training camp is back.
Well, kind of. It’s not what we’re used to by any means, but we’ll take it. While we’re not getting the live action videos from the media, the fans along the sideline in Oxnard, or the mothership, we are getting some notes after practice and some players/plays that stood out.
With very little to go off of, it was nice to see one individual show up in his first training camp practice since 2015. Aldon Smith.
Top two plays of Cowboys first training camp practice: CeeDee Lamb one-handed grab from Dak Prescott in individual drills. Aldon Smith knocking down a Dak pass and almost intercepting it rushing off the right end in team drills— Jon Machota (@jonmachota) August 14, 2020
There are a couple reasons why this is important for the Dallas Cowboys. The first is some people didn’t think Smith would even make it to training camp with the Cowboys. When the team signed him to the incentive-based deal earlier in the offseason, there were people who didn’t expect Smith to ever put on a Cowboys helmet. The second reason is other people didn’t think Smith would have much gas left in the tank as he now on the wrong-side of 30, and has been away from the game since 2015. From the sounds of it, Smith has looked really good in the little he’s been on the field.
Now, again, you must remember, these are the first few training camp practices, and normally everyone has their rose-colored glasses on. But if Aldon Smith is able to give even half of what he was in San Francisco years ago, the Cowboys pass rush with DeMarcus Lawrence, Gerald McCoy, Tyrone Crawford, and newly-acquired Everson Griffen, could wind up being one of the leagues best pass rushing units.
Aldon Smith’s first training camp practice with the Cowboys pic.twitter.com/U2RtVP4l5L— Jon Machota (@jonmachota) August 15, 2020
Reports indicate that Smith still has burst, speed, and explosiveness with that 6’6” frame. That is exactly the reason the Cowboys took the chance they did with Smith, signing him back in April. Low-risk, high-reward.
While it is early, and it is just training camp practices, it’s still nice to see some signs of Aldon Smith making a difference. Let’s just hope he’s able to stray healthy, both physically and mentally, in 2020.