Cowboys fans should love this Jaylon Smith news!

May 6, 2016; Irving, TX, USA; Dallas Cowboys linebacker Jaylon Smith (54) during rookie minicamp at Dallas Cowboys headquarters at Valley Ranch. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports
May 6, 2016; Irving, TX, USA; Dallas Cowboys linebacker Jaylon Smith (54) during rookie minicamp at Dallas Cowboys headquarters at Valley Ranch. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports /

Despite suffering from a devastating knee injury, Dallas Cowboys rookie linebacker Jaylon Smith isn’t simply satisfied sitting on the sidelines.

The Dallas Cowboys shocked the sporting world last month when they used their high second round selection in the 2016 NFL Draft to pick injured linebacker Jaylon Smith from Notre Dame.

A consideration for the Cowboys fourth overall selection in the first round if healthy, Smith was a steal and a gamble all at the same time for Dallas at the 34th overall pick. One NFL personnel director said it could end up being the greatest second round selection in league history.

No one questions the talent. In his last two seasons with the Irish, Smith recorded an outstanding 226 total tackles, 18.0 tackles for a loss and 4.5 sacks.

At 6-2, 235 pounds, Smith could have been the number one overall pick in the draft if he didn’t tear both his ACL and LCL in his knee during the Fiesta Bowl in January. What had many NFL team concerned was the fact he also suffered some nerve damage in that knee as well.

Outside of the injury, there have also been some questions about Smith’s intelligence. Expected to take over the starting middle linebacker role in Dallas when he returns to the football field, many view the position as the “quarterback” of the defense. One that is usually responsible for calling out the defensive plays to all the other defenders.

But according to one Cowboys insider, Smith’s football intelligence seems to be rather encouraging.

"“I like [Smith’s] personality. I like his smarts a lot,” said’s David Helman during an episode of #AskTheBoys. “I was actually just listening to someone tell me about how well he’s already picking up the Cowboys defense and how much he has already absorbed just in the three weeks that he’s been here.”"

That’s good to hear. Especially considering Smith score just 18 on his Wonderlic test, which supposedly measures a player’s intelligence. That low score combined with his severe knee injury had Smith off at least one NFL scout’s draft board.

"“Not the brightest cookie in the room,” an unnamed scout told the Milwaukee-Wisconsin Journal Sentinel before last month’s NFL Draft. “Probably have to line him up. I don’t know if he’s a natural player but once he sees it he can find it and go get it. Now he’s got the knee and he’s not a very bright kid. I wouldn’t touch a kid like that. I have no idea where he goes. He’s off my board.”"

But the Wonderlic results do not equate success in the NFL. The most cerebral position in football is considered to be at quarterback. And as the Sporting News pointed out recently, some of the greatest quarterbacks in NFL history have posted low Wonderlic scores.

"“…you’ll find plenty of guys with low Wonderlic scores who went on to have fantastic NFL careers and those with high Wonderlic scores who didn’t amount to much in the NFL,” wrote Omnisport’s Marcus DiNitto on the site last month. “Dan Marino (16), Terry Bradshaw (16), Jim Kelly (15), Randall Cunningham (15), Donovan McNabb (14). And on the other end of the spectrum: Greg McElroy (48), Jason Maas (43), Drew Henson (42), Ryan Nassib (41), Bruce Eugene (41), Hugh Millen (41).”"

We all know people that are not great test takers. That could simply be the case for Smith here. Regardless, it’s encouraging news to hear that sources close to the player within Valley Ranch are actually excited by the way the 20-year old linebacker is learning the Cowboys defensive scheme from the sidelines, as an observer.

Next: Who will lead the Cowboys in sacks in 2016?

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