Niners place troubled Smith on NFI list

4:58 PM, Sep 23, 2013   |    comments
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Santa Clara, CA (Sports Network) - The San Francisco 49ers put outside linebacker Aldon Smith on the reserve/non-football injury list on Monday, one day after the team announced he would be taking an indefinite leave of absence to seek help for a substance-abuse problem.

The 49ers allowed Smith to play in Sunday's game against the Indianapolis Colts despite the All-Pro pass rusher's arrest on charges of driving under the influence and possession of marijuana two days prior. Team CEO Jed York revealed after San Francisco's 27-7 loss that Smith would be headed to a treatment facility and there was no timetable for his return.

Smith was taken into custody after crashing his car in San Jose's Silver Creek district early Friday morning. He had previously been arrested for a DUI in Miami in January of 2012, and was later named in two lawsuits stemming from a house party he hosted in June of that year. Smith was reportedly stabbed at the party.

"I am taking a leave of absence to address my health," Smith said in a statement on Monday. "I am sorry that I have affected my team, my family and the organization. I will do everything in my power to handle this situation the best way possible. I appreciate the support of the 49ers and our fans."

On the field, Smith has been one of the NFL's premier pass rushers since being taken by San Francisco with the seventh overall pick of the 2011 draft. He notched 14 sacks during his rookie season, then ranked second in the league with 19 1/2 sacks last year while helping the 49ers to an appearance in Super Bowl XLVII.

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