Tyler Smith: Returning to left tackle from left guard is like riding a bike

The Cowboys had nine-time Pro Bowler Jason Peters in for a visit Thursday. They haven’t signed him yet but could soon.

That might not affect their plans for the season opener with rookie Tyler Smith penciled in as the starter.

The Cowboys selected Smith in the first round of the 2022 draft to be their left tackle of the future. The future just arrived sooner than expected. Tyron Smith‘s surgery to repair a torn hamstring will keep him out of the lineup for most, if not all, of the season.

“He’s very calm,” right guard Zack Martin said of Tyler Smith, via Michael Gehlken of the Dallas Morning News. “He’s been great since the moment he got in here. He’s asked the right questions. He’s worked hard. He cares about it, which you can’t ask any more than that from a young first-round pick like Tyler. Again, he’s done a great job.

“It’s going to be a little bit of a learning curve. But I think it will help him, learning on the fly a little bit. I think he’s the type of guy who rises to the occasion. I’m excited to see him play.”

Tyler Smith hasn’t played left tackle in a game since last season at Tulsa. He has not taken reps there since offseason workouts in June.

Smith spent training camp competing with Connor McGovern for the starting left guard job, which coach Mike McCarthy had said McGovern was winning. But Smith practiced with the first-team offense at left tackle Thursday.

“I’ve always been a left-side player, so it has helped definitely [the] transition, knowing not too many things are changing,” Smith said. “I’m still generating power from the same areas. It’s just a different footwork, little bit of a different stance, different things you’ve got to tighten up. It’s like riding a bike.”