Fish Report: How Many Zeroes Are Cowboys Paying Aldon Smith?

Mike Fisher
April 02, 2020 - 3:46 pm

FRISCO (105.3 The Fan) - As always, especially when it is the agent who leaks news of a client’s new contract, the insta-tweets scream out the biggest, fattest, roundest numbers. That’s often the involved reporter’s payback to the agent for handing over the info; almost everybody - player, agent and report - comes out smelling sweet.

And then, a week or a day or an hour later, the media digging continues, and the broad strokes in those original insta-tweets are thinned and refined.

The numbers look less chubby. And in many cases, the check-writing team looks less generous. And less foolish.

Which brings us to new Dallas Cowboys defensive end Aldon Smith’s contract. A handful of media folks seemingly got the same text at about the same time on Wednesday evening: “It’s one year and $4 million.”

But of course now we know that it’s not. Not any of that. Not necessarily any of those zeroes. Here's what 105.3 The Fan has learned is the dollar-by-dollar breakdown on a gifted pass-rusher with a frightening off-the-field history who, it is hoped (for his sake far more than for the football team's), is as "clean and sober'' as supporters claim:

Guarantees: $95,000 - but that's only IF Smith, who is presently on NFL suspension, is reinstated.

Training camp installments: $100,000 + 100,000 + 100,000 paid over the course of the month at camp, based on his presence.

Regular-season weekly active bonus = $650,000 total. ($40,625 x 16 weeks.)

8 sacks = $500,000.

10 sacks = $1 million.

12 sacks = $1.5 million.

14 sacks = $2 million.

The grand total of all those "if's,'' should Smith achieve them for the 2020 Cowboys? It's $4 million. But the locked-in guarantees? The "for-sure's''? Those total zero.

The Cowboys are likely optimistic about reinstatement, and will happily pay that first paltry $95,000 if it happens here in the next 60 days or so. And they'll pay every dollar along the way, because that will be the result of a healthy and productive Aldon Smith, who in his first 43 NFL games, a decade ago, recorded 42 sacks. They'll do that happily, too.

But in the event of an unhappy ending here? All the bluster and the insta-tweets and the fat numbers will add up to ... not lots of zeroes. Jut one zero.