The NFL’s all-time king of sacks, Bruce Smith, stopped by Broncos practice on Monday and offered some words of encouragement to Von Miller as he tries to dethrone Smith.

Earlier this offseason, Miller mentioned that he wanted the all-time sack record. At face value, the claim sounds preposterous. “How is a 30-year-old pass rusher going to break a career record he’s not even halfway to yet?’ However, Miller is actually ahead of Smith’s record-breaking pace. On his 30th birthday, Smith had 92 sacks, while the Broncos’ pass rusher had 98 when he turned 30.

When asked about Miller’s lofty goal, Smith said, “I would expect for him to say [that he wants to break my record]. As a matter of fact, I’d be disappointed if he didn’t say it. He’s a special talent. He’s got the full package, the speed, the technique, the quickness, the agility. I enjoy turning the game on on Sunday just to watch him play.”

Smith continued to say, “He’s off to a great start. He’s got what, 98 sacks right now and he’s only in his ninth year? Yeah, so it’s about longevity. It’s about maintaining that high-level of play and consistency for not five or six years, but it’s about a body of work that lasts a decade or more. If you’re able to be consistently doing that and maintain your health, because the number one factor is, you gotta be healthy.”

Now, with Vic Fangio in the fold, the odds of Miller reaching that goal are that much better. His entire career, Fangio has improved the play and production of his linebackers, which has been evidenced with multiple players since Miller entered the league.

From 2011-2014, Aldon Smith averaged 0.88 sacks per game. Without Fangio as his defensive coordinator, Smith averaged just 0.39. In his four years prior to joining Fangio’s defense in Chicago, Khalil Mack averaged 0.63 sacks per game. Under Fangio, he averaged 0.78 for a leap of 0.15 sacks per game, or 2.5 more per season.

The jump in Mack’s production is likely closer to what the Broncos should expect from Miller, as Aldon Smith’s decline had other off-the-field factors involved. If Miller saw a similar leap from his career average of 0.82 to 0.97 sacks per game, he’d be on pace for 15.5 sacks per season, allowing him to quickly catch up to Bruce Smith on the all-time sack leaderboard.