Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Oakland Raiders cornerback Sean Smith was arrested last year on felony assault charges, for which he pleaded not guilty. He was alleged to have attacked his sister’s boyfriend, who has sued both Smith and the Raiders since then.

Oakland has stood behind Smith, with former head coach Jack Del Rio going to bat in a big way, saying he actually was defending his sister at the time.

“I think we’ll let him battle legally what issues he has,” Del Rio said back in August of 2017, per the San Francisco Chronicle. “Obviously, things occurred that were taken issue with, so he’s having to defend himself right now.”

Now that the case is in civil court, the Raiders are pushing back on the notion that they are in any way responsible for what Smith did that day. Per TMZ Sports, the team has asked the presiding judge to throw the case out against it, noting “the alleged assault has no conceivable nexus to the Raiders or Smith’s employment with the Raiders.”

The man filing the suit against the Raiders and Smith, Christopher Woods, alleges that Oakland’s strength and conditioning program contributed to the ferocity of the attack. An attack he alleges caused brain damage.

Oakland has recently been one of the NFL’s hotter teams of late in terms of popularity, thanks to the recent hire of Jon Gruden. Per our data, the Raiders jumped up to No 24 on the SNIPdaily Franchise Top 100 in the first week of the new year, ahead of the Miami Heat and Tampa Bay Buccaneers, which corresponded with the rumors that Gruden was on his way to Oakland.

No doubt, the Smith assault lawsuit is exactly the kind of news the team would rather avoid in the future.

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PLAYERS: Sean Smith
TEAMS: Oakland Raiders
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