Reinstated Aldon Smith: A Gym Monster Bonding With Military Vets'

Mike Fisher

FRISCO - A first-hand look at the just-reinstated Aldon Smith? Jay Glazer, the reporter/trainer who had a great deal of involvement in the long-troubled star's return to the NFL via his recent signing with the Dallas Cowboys, is among the new people who've had a first-hand look.

And his look at Smith - after four years of NFL suspension that had just come to the end, allowing his re-entry into football - is glowing.

Glazer on Smith in the workout room: "We trained him at Unbreakable Performance and got him up (from 260) to about 287 pounds, completely rocked up, solid as can be, very low body fat. He has trained his butt off. His conditioning is great. ... He is just freaking monstrous.

"We had him on these resistance cords connected to the wall on a machine called the Raptor. I’ve had a ton of guys on it — big huge guys, monsters. Smith ripped it off the wall ... No one has ever done that. He is an absolute freak of nature. I don’t know who to compare him to because he’s 287 with a V. It’s ridiculous.''

Glazer on Smith's sobriety: "We’re going on nine months now and he has not missed a single session. Not one in nine months! He’s shown accountability to the whole group. ... He’s talked about his sobriety. It’s not the easiest thing in the world to open up to 80 to 100 total strangers in a group setting, but a lot of our vets are battling sobriety issues, too, and Smith has been extremely vulnerable and open about it.

"Vulnerability is real strength, not the muscles on the outside.''

Glazer on that "group'' - the "Merging Vets and Players'': "They bonded so much that when we opened up our New York MVP location a month ago, he flew in to talk about sobriety with the new vets and players we were going to have there. ... Ironically, the vet he bonded with most, a guy named Sergio, is a huge Cowboys fan. Sergio has done great. His unit in the Marines, the 2/7, has lost 45 to suicide. Forty-five. Smith got particularly close to Sergio and has been a great listener.

"When he signed his contract, he was incredibly grateful for where his life had been. He told the whole MVP team, “I’m really going to help a lot of people with my story.” It was beautiful. It really touched a lot of our vets. They told him they can’t wait for the first game with him standing on the sidelines. The flag is raised, anthem playing, he literally now has an army that is rooting for him behind him.

"Nine months ago, he never knew it would be possible.''

We've chronicled Smith's horrific behavioral history here and his contract here. But Glazer's offerings, via The Athletic, are as insightful as it gets on the subject, and can be found here.

And in the end, for Dallas, it's about "risk/reward.'' As we note here as it regards finances ... the Cowboys and Aldon Smith just got rewarded.

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