3 potential landing spots for Cowboys Jaylon Smith in 2021

Jaylon Smith, Dallas Cowboys (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)
Jaylon Smith, Dallas Cowboys (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images) /
2 of 3
Jaylon Smith, Dallas Cowboys
Jaylon Smith, Dallas Cowboys (Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports) /

The Las Vegas Raiders

Again, here’s another easy connection to make. Smith’s former defensive coordinator while having his best season in Dallas back in 2018 was Rod Marinelli. And the old ball coach along with several former Cowboys like tight end Jason Witten, defensive tackle Maliek Collins, and safety Jeff Heath now all now reside with the Las Vegas Raiders.

Prior to the knee injury Smith suffered while at Notre Dame, Raiders’ general manager Mike Mayock was very high on Jaylon’s potential as a then draft analyst for the NFL Network. Mayock even believed the young defensive prospect should have been in the conversation to go number one overall in the 2016 NFL Draft. Mayock likely feels the similarly following Smith’s injury-free tenure in Dallas.

As for the linebacker corps in Sin City, it currently includes names like Nicholas Morrow, Nick Kwiatkoski, and Cory Littleton. None of them have more than 71 combined tackles on the season so far. Smith alone has 123 tackles through 13 games, the second-highest total in the NFL right now.

Adding a player like Jaylon Smith to the Raiders’ linebacker corps would clearly be an upgrade for them. And with Marinelli currently the interim defensive coordinator, that past successful relationship could continue to bear fruit for both player and coach in Vegas next season.