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First-round pick Tyler Smith holding his own at LT; Dallas Cowboys love his play style

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Dallas Cowboys Tyler Smith blocks Buccaneers Antoine Winfield Jr. during the second half of the game against Tampa Bay Buccaneers Sunday, Sept. 11, 2022, at AT&T Stadium in Arlington.

Dallas Cowboys Tyler Smith blocks Buccaneers Antoine Winfield Jr. during the second half of the game against Tampa Bay Buccaneers Sunday, Sept. 11, 2022, at AT&T Stadium in Arlington. (Yffy Yossifor/Fort Worth Star-Telegram/TNS)

FRISCO, Texas — Remember all the preseason concern and hand wringing about what the Dallas Cowboys were going to do at left tackle after eight-time Pro Bowler Tyron Smith suffered an alvusion fracture in his left knee, sidelining him until possibly December and forcing the team to sign 40-year-old Jason Peters as an possible answer.

Two games into the season, no one seems to be worried to much about left tackle

Rookie first-round pick Tyler Smith has more than held his own against the Tampa Buccaneers and Cincinnati Bengals, while facing two of the league’s best pass rushers in Tampa Bay’s Shaq Barrett and Cincinnati’s Trey Hendrickson.

According to Pro Football Focus, Smith has allowed three total pressures and just one hurry in the first two games.

He allowed just one pressure in 62 snaps in the 20-17 victory against the Bengals.

“Tyler is an alpha personality and he enjoys playing,” coach Mike McCarthy said. “He definitely improved from week 1 to week 2.”

Smith has also been a mauler as expected in the run game with his size and strength.

Look at the 46-yard pitch to running back Tony Pollard against the Bengals, setting up a 1-yard score and 14-3 lead.

It was pulling Tyler Smith who walled the left side to Pollard for off the left side so spring the big gain.

The Cowboys rushed 27 times for 101 yards in the game.

He hasn’t been perfect. There are still some communication and technique issues he has to work on.

Considering that Smith spent no time at tackle in training camp while he was competing with Connor McGovern for the starting job at left guard and has played the two games with a converted center Matt Farniok at left guard after McGovern went down on the first drive of the season, the Cowboys have couldn’t have asked for a better result.

“I think he’s going to be awesome,” offensive coordinator Kellen Moore said of Tyler Smith. “Any time you have a younger guy, there’s going to be moments where you’re going to learn a couple of things on the fly, some sort of protection thing. He’s been really solid out there.

Love his play style. Love how he just comes off the ball. It’s been awesome. Think there were a couple of times where they maybe play with some movement and kind of get him that way. I’d rather be correcting that than play style.”

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