More importantly, the 23-year-old linebacker has also made a big difference off the field.
Smith recently announced that he’s donating $5,099 for each sack that occurs during the regular season, with the proceeds split between two local Boys & Girls Clubs.
“I am excited to be able to give back to my community,” Smith said, via the 49ers’ official website. Now, in addition to playing to win games, I am playing to raise much needed money for a great organization that makes a huge difference in the lives of millions of young people.”
Factoring in his NFL-leading 19.5 sacks, the tally is up to $99,430.50 … and counting. The gesture certainly hasn’t gone unnoticed.
“We are thrilled to be Aldon Smith’s charity of choice and greatly appreciate his generosity,” said Rob Connolly, President of Boys & Girls Clubs of San Francisco. “Donations like these help support the children and teens in our communities who need us the most – keeping them safe, academically focused, physically and emotionally healthy and equipped with job-readiness skills.”
“We are excited to have Aldon Smith’s support and appreciate his involvement,” said Peter Fortenbaugh, Executive Director of the Boys and Girls Clubs of the Peninsula. “In an area where 50 percent of children drop out of high school, Aldon is helping our youth develop the academic and life skills they need to graduate high school prepared for college or career. His gift allows our children to imagine the possibilities their futures may hold.”
This year, Smith, who’s already set team records with his take-downs, became the fastest player in NFL history to record 30 career sacks (27 games). As it stands, he needs just 3.5 more to break the league’s single-season record (22.5), currently held by Michael Strahan.
With three games remaining, the accomplishment is well within reach. For charity’s sake, here’s hoping he gets there.
(Photo: Brian Bahr/Getty Images)