When Aldon Smith played his first game in the month of November, he was having a nice season. At that point, he had 7 1/2 sacks, which put him behind the likes of J.J. Watt, Von Miller, DeMarcus Ware and Cameron Wake in the NFL sack race.
The month ends on Friday with Smith having 16 ½ sacks, sitting alone on first place in the sack race and with him having a fantastic year, one worthy of defensive player of the year. With five games left, Smith has a very good shot of owning the NFL record for sacks in a season. The current record holder, Michael Strahan, had 22 1/2 in 2001.
The league acknowledged that today by making Smith the Defensive Player of the Month for November. The month included the 49ers' bye week (Nov. 4), but Smith went on such a tear the next three weeks that he was the obvious choice. It's also worth noting that Smith has been dealing with a shoulder injury this month and is on the 49ers' injury report. He was listed as "limited" on Wednesday.
Nov. 11, vs. St. Louis: 2 sacks, 6 tackles
Nov. 19, vs. Chicago: 5 ½ sacks, 7 tackles, 2 force fumbles
Nov. 25, at New Orleans: 1 ½ sacks, 5 tackles
1. Aldon Smith, 16.5
2. J.J. Watt, 14.5
3. Von Miller, 14.0
4. DeMarcus Ware, 10.0
5. Cameron Wake, 9.5
- Matt Barrows