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Aldon Smith, one of the most integral parts of the San Francisco 49ers’ championship caliber defense, has been suspended for the first nine games of the season. And, if you’re a Niners fan hoping for an appeal that leads to a lesser punishment, that won’t be becoming.

Smith is going to miss more than half of the season because he violated both the NFL’s personal-conduct and substance-abuse policies. As you can see in the table below, Smith’s absence will be missed.

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It does appear that Smith will be allowed to be around the team. If you recall, Josh Gordon of the Cleveland Browns, who is suspended for the entire season, is not allowed to be around his team. Because apparently smoking weed is worse than drunk driving and illegally possessing an assualt weapon.

With Smith and Navorro Bowman both missing significant time, I think it’s safe to expect the Niners’ defense to take a step back this season. Which will, of course, put more pressure on Colin Kaepernick to learn how to throw a football (I’m joking…kind of).


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About Sean Wagner-McGough