Jaylon Smith did his signature “swipe” celebration for the first time in a Dallas Cowboys uniform on Monday.
Smith had a would-be sack on quarterback Kellen Moore to end practice, and he succumbed to his teammates pleas to celebrate with his “swipe,” when he takes a right-handed swing at the ground and “swipes” the turf.
“Cowboys Nation will know about it,” Smith said, smiling about his celebration.
Now, Smith is ready to do it in a game. Nothing has been announced, but he could return to game action in Saturday night’s preseason game against the Indianapolis Colts. It would be his first game action since Jan. 1, 2016 when he sustained a severe knee injury in Notre Dame’s bowl game.
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“I’ve been feeling great,” Smith said. “For us, it’s just about getting reps and that’s something that I’ve gotten. We’ll finish up this week and see if they’ll let me go.”
How hungry is Smith to return to game action?
“Hungry,” Smith said. “Large appetite.”
The would-be sack is another promising sign for Smith. He went unblocked on a blitz and got to Moore in a hurry.
Smith continues to have his moments in training camp and the coaching staff has expressed an eagerness to see him return. But they have been staying patient and monitoring his workload.
This is a guy who sat out all of last season after tearing the anterior cruciate and medical collateral ligaments in his left knee, and had damage to the peroneal nerve.
But Smith is making progress and the organization is hopeful he’ll contribute at a high level. Smith made a name for himself for his playmaking abilities in college, finishing his three-year career with 23.5 tackles for loss, including 4.5 sacks.
He did the “swipe” plenty of times in college and has been practicing it in the room before doing it on a field yet again Monday.
“It’s a celebration I created my sophomore year in high school – self made and I stuck with it,” Smith said. “It got very popular throughout the college years. All the guys on the sidelines were telling me to do it. It’s going to be a great feeling to be able to do it in a Cowboys uniform.”