The details of Smith‘s deal are still unclear, but I would guess the deal is somewhere in the $2.5 million dollar range. This is a great bargain for a team whose defense was historically bad in the first half of the 2020 season.
After the Seahawks brought in Carlos Dunlap before their Week 9 game against the Bills, the defense saw significant improvement. The management knows that bolstering the pass rush will in turn lead to a greater ability for the team’s corners to succeed in coverage, which is why they’ve brought back Dunlap and now, signed Aldon Smith.
How Aldon Smith helps the Seahawks
What will Smith’s role on the team be, though? The defensive line is stacked at this point, with the team bringing back Benson Mayowa and Carlos Dunlap and also bringing in Kerry Hyder, Jr. Seattle paid all these players while still pursuing Smith in free agency, and I believe it’s because they want him to play a sort of mixed role in 2021.
There’s a clear hole at the Sam linebacker role for the Hawks, since they haven’t brought KJ Wright back or brought another free agent in yet. Seattle could roll with Bobby Wagner and former first-round pick Jordyn Brooks at the Mike and Will positions, respectively. This would lead to Aldon Smith filling the Sam role on the small number of snaps that this position fits into the Seattle defense. In the remainder of Smith’s time on the field, he could split snaps with Benson Mayowa as the team’s number 2 edge rusher.
Either way, bringing in Smith is a great way to acquire some cheap help from a player who is a former All-Pro. We will have to wait until closer to the season to have a clearer idea of Smith’s role, but overall I think it’s an excellent move by an organization shaping up to have an intimidating defense in 2021.