After the major additions of Kerry Hyder Jr. and Carlos Dunlap, it appeared the Seahawks were set in their pass rushing unit. But despite already looking much improved on paper, they've made yet another noteworthy move to bolster their group of edges.
Per Mike Garafolo of NFL Network, Seattle has agreed to sign veteran defensive end Aldon Smith to a one-year contract. This comes just a day after Smith, who played for the Cowboys in 2020, took a visit to the Pacific Northwest to meet with the Seahawks face-to-face.
The Seahawks have been trying to acquire Smith for quite some time. Before trading for Dunlap near the midseason trade deadline, they attempted to strike a deal with Dallas for the 31-year old edge before talks fell through. As Cowboy Maven's Mike Fisher reported yesterday, the team then offered Smith a contract back last month, but it didn't come together due to undisclosed "issues" he had/has been dealing with.
Considering Smith's past, which includes several run-ins with the legal system, namely a domestic violence case, Seattle had to be cautious and see if the 2011 first-round selection was in the right situation to play football this fall. After all, Smith's off-the-field woes kept him out of the NFL for four straight seasons from 2016-19.
It would seem everything checked out, at least well enough for the Seahawks to finalize a contract with him. Now adding Smith to a group that includes Dunlap, Hyder, Benson Mayowa, Darrell Taylor, Alton Robinson, L.J. Collier, and Rasheem Green, Seattle is inarguably the deepest - and best - it's looked at defensive end in half a decade.
Smith is coming off a solid comeback campaign for the Cowboys. Appearing in 809 snaps over the course of all 16 games, he put up 5.0 sacks - 3.0 of which came against Russell Wilson and the Seahawks in Week 3 - on 50 total pressures and tacked on another 48 combined tackles.
Wilson will be glad Smith is finally on his side for once. Dating back to his days with the 49ers at the peak of the storied Seattle-San Francisco rivalry in the mid 2010s, Smith has sacked Wilson 9.0 times with a forced fumble, including playoffs.
Though the Seahawks may still have some to work to do in their secondary, their defense as a whole looks to be in a much better place than it was at this time last year. When they acquired Dunlap last season, things began to click for them following a disastrous and historically poor first half of the season. Now, with Smith in tow, they could be a matchup nightmare for opposing offenses and wreak havoc all season long.