49ers’ Aldon Smith: A terrible waste of talent

“There’s nothing more sad in life than a waste of talent.”-A Bronx Tale

San Francisco 49ers linebacker and University of Missouri, Columbia alum Aldon Smith is in trouble again and the storm is substantial this time. Smith was arrested in Santa Clara, California on charges involving a hit and run, DUI and vandalism. I call it the trifecta of off the field athlete stupidity. A waste of talent indeed.

Smith is one of the best defensive players in the NFL yet he continues to damage his career by getting into serious trouble with the law. Aldon, you can break tackles but you can’t break the law son.

His rap sheet of charges is nearly as long as his lateral reach. In 2011, he had three felony gun charges knocked down to misdemeanors. In 2013, he was arrested on charges of drunken driving and sentenced to 11 days of work release. Last season, he was suspended for the first nine games of the season due to personal conduct issues. His arrest today marks the third time he has been taken in for drunk driving. I don’t even want to know how many times he has driven under the influence and gotten away with it.

All this comes after a week where the 49ers expressed interest in resigning the troubled young man. After all, Smith is only 25 years old and entering his 5th season of action. Smith recorded 19.5 sacks in 2012 and has 44 sacks for his career in 50 games. Where his career goes from here is undecided but I can promise another suspension will be handed down and it may be worse than the last.

How much longer can San Francisco go along with this? Will the NFL intervene and hit Smith where it counts? All of this could have been avoided if the man asked for a driver. How many times will athletes get in trouble for not requesting a driver? How many lives would be saved if people didn’t drink and drive? If you want to have fun, do it but get it done in a safe manner. There are no excuses for Smith’s behavior. He deserves to be punished. He seems to have no regard for his career, well being or the well being of others.

You teach him by taking things away. It’s time for the NFL to take more things away from Aldon Smith. Send a message. Make an example. People will tie this to Mizzou and that’s inaccurate. This is a separate case that got started after Smith left MU. The tremble may have been noticeable on that campus from time to time, but clearly Smith has lost his way.

Time for the 49ers and NFL to help him find it. Smith was released by the 49ers after the incident. What a terrible waste of talent.

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