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NFL reinstates Aldon Smith

Mike Florio and Chris Simms look at the biggest and most important changes some teams made on their roster and determine whether they upgraded, stayed the same or got worse.

Aldon Smith, the seventh overall pick in the 2011 draft who last played in 2015, is back in the NFL.

A source with direct knowledge of the situation tells PFT that Smith’s application for reinstatement under the substance-abuse policy has been granted.

Smith, who has played for both the 49ers and Raiders, has been suspended on multiple occasions, for various off-field issues. He was dominant early in his career, averaging nearly one sack per game.

The Cowboys signed Smith pending his potential reinstatement. As of May 26, he officially will join the Dallas roster.

It remains to be seen whether Smith can play like he once did. Very few players return to football after so much time off. If Smith, who’ll be 31 in September, can get back to what he once was, the Cowboys will have dramatically boosted their pass rush.