-- Talented but troubled linebacker Aldon Smith will get a chance to resurrect his NFL career in the Bay Area.
In a surprise move on the cusp of the regular season -- and on the same day he was charged with three misdemeanors -- the pass rush-needy Oakland Raiders signed Smith to a one-year deal, the team announced.
Smith's deal is worth up to $8 million with incentives, according to a source.
"Aldon is an extremely talented young player," coach Jack Del Rio said in a statement. "We welcome him to the Raiders family and expect him to bring his best every day and be a great teammate."
According to the Santa Clara district attorney's office, Smith was charged with three misdemeanors Friday: DUI with a prior conviction and refusal to submit a chemical test, hit and run with property damage and vandalism with damage under $400. He is set to be arraigned Oct. 6. The maximum penalty is two years and six months in county jail if he is convicted of all three charges.
Smith practiced with the team Friday, wearing No. 99. Despite his off-the-field issues, Smith will be eligible to play Sunday, which the Raiders will consider depending on his conditioning, league sources tell Schefter. Smith could be subject to severe NFL discipline in the future, pending the judicial outcome of his latest incident.
The expectation around the NFL is that Smith will be suspended again at some point this season, but he is eligible to play until a suspension is announced.
The San Francisco 49ers released Smith on Aug. 7 after he was arrested the night before on hit-and-run, driving under the influence and vandalism charges. It was his fifth arrest since 2012.
Smith, 25, also spent a month in treatment during the 2013 season. He was suspended for nine games last season.
"We are confident that the Raiders provide an environment where Aldon can thrive through the support, structure and leadership within the building," general manager Reggie McKenzie said in the statement. "We are excited to have Aldon here in the Raiders family."
While signing Smith is murky, there are plenty of football reasons for Oakland to sign him. The Raiders had just 22 sacks last season, tied for the second fewest in the NFL. Smith has 44 sacks in 50 regular-season NFL games.
Smith will team with second-year player Khalil Mack to assemble a promising pass-rushing duo, assuming Smith will be eligible to play a significant portion of the season for Oakland.