Aldon Smith: 'I'm working hard to grow from my experiences'

Aldon Smith: 'I'm working hard to grow from my experiences'
August 30, 2014, 7:45 am
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Aldon Smith will be eligible to return against the New York Giants on Nov. 16. (USATSI)

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San Francisco 49ers linebacker Aldon Smith, whom the NFL suspended for nine games to open the regular season for violating the league’s policies on substance abuse and personal conduct, released a statement Saturday through the NFL Players Association:

"I apologize to my teammates, coaches, the entire 49ers organization and 49ers fans for not being able to contribute on the field for the next several weeks. Over the last year, I have learned a lot and I’m working hard to grow from my experiences. I want to thank my family and friends, my teammates, my union and the 49ers for supporting me during this process. I will be at work daily to participate in all permitted work activities, and to support my teammates, just as they have supported me.”

Smith was suspended without pay over the nine games, which totals $1.374 million in lose wages from his scheduled $2.336 million salary. He will be able to work out at the team's training facility in Santa Clara and take part in meetings during his suspension.