Cowboys place Jaylon Smith on injured reserve

Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports

The Dallas Cowboys will have to wait until next season to see 2016 second-round pick Jaylon Smith take to the football field. The team reportedly placed the former Notre Dame standout on injured reserve Monday.

Dallas selected Smith at the top of the second round despite the fact that the linebacker had suffered a brutal knee injury in the Fiesta Bowl just months prior.

Smith, who was considered a top-five pick prior to being injured, was said to haveĀ suffered nerve damage in the knee. It was worrisome enough for NFL teams that he dropped all the way to Day 2.

By placing Smith on season-ending injured reserve, the Cowboys are taking it slow with the linebacker. And in reality, that’s a smart decision. There’s no reason to rush him back, especially with the team’s linebackers playing at a stellar level on the season.

The good news here is that Smith was showing signs of recovery in the months following the Cowboys selecting him. This gives the team hope that he might be able to return fully healthy in 2017.