Surprisingly, There’s No Surprise: Cowboys Take Tyron Smith

The Cowboys were the first team to use the entire 10-minute period to select their player in Thursday night’s draft. With Nick Fairley still on the board, along with other tackles and defensive backs on the board, it would not have been a big surprise if Dallas had done something out of the ordinary.

In the end, though, the Cowboys went with USC tackle Tyron Smith.

Here are a few items.

First, a video showing highlights from last season:


Draft Preview: Tyron Smith by FOX_Sports_Interactive

Second, ESPN‘s analysis:

What he brings: The biggest concerns with Smith are instincts and weight. He misses assignments on occasion and has to show he can maintain the 20-pound weight gain he has had since the end of the regular season. He is coming off a minor knee injury but it does not appear to be a concern going forward, and he has the highest ceiling of any tackle prospect in this class. Smith has excellent foot speed, long arms and good flexibility, and when he becomes more polished he is the hard-to-find player you want protecting your quarterback’s blind side. And it’s important to point out that the reason he did not play on the left side in college is because USC had Ryan Kalil at left tackle, who projects as a future top-5 pick. It wasn’t because the coaches thought he couldn’t handle it.

Third, NFL.com‘s take:

Smith is one of the best prospects on the hoof in this class. Blessed with an ideal NFL frame and has the outstanding feet and athleticism necessary to be a starting left tackle. Does a great job staying in front of speed rushers, locks on and sustains, and can anchor against the bull rush. Shows solid power in the running game and is really productive out in space. Football IQ is lacking. Fails to find his target at times in the running games and is a tick slow recognizing blitzes. Smith could come off the board early in the first round due to his rare physical gifts.