In Tyron Smith's conference call with the Dallas media, he said the Cowboys told him they want him to be their left tackle of the future. It seemed as though the Cowboys drafted Smith to play right tackle, at least in 2011, but Smith’s answer may have raised some questions. There is no doubt that Smith’s body type and skill set are probably a better fit for the left side of the line, but he did play right tackle at USC. Plus, Doug Free—despite a few struggles—played fairly well at left tackle in 2010.
Don’t rule out the possibility of Smith and Free “switching” positions, however, even as soon as this season. Remember that Free played well on the right side in limited action in 2009. With Smith’s size and athleticism, it isn’t unreasonable to think that the Cowboys want to get him to the left side as soon as possible—even if it means moving Free back to right tackle.
Personally, I think Smith has All-Pro ability on either side of the line, but his future is at left tackle. I really believe he has the potential to be one of the best left tackles in the league. Let’s take a look at some more of his game film.
I think the Cowboys should play Smith at right tackle in 2011. He is comfortable there now, and it will give him time to get acclimated to the NFL before moving to the more difficult left tackle position. That’s not to say that Free is not or should not be part of the Cowboys’ plans in 2012 and beyond. He’s a very capable offensive tackle who could become one of the best in the league...on the right side.