Top 50 Players of 2016: Highest-Ranking Cowboys Player Anchors Offensive Line

Editor's Note: With the offseason in full swing, the focus is now shifting to the 2016 season, where the Cowboys have one of the toughest schedules in the NFL. Not only do the Cowboys face five playoff teams but many of the top players in football. So the writers of DallasCowboys.com have ranked the Top 50 players expected to be on the field this season, including the Cowboys. Today, we continue the list with Cowboys offensive tackle Tyron Smith.)

Name: Tyron Smith
Team:Dallas Cowboys
Position: Offensive Tackle
Height/Weight: 6-5 / 315
Experience: 5 seasons
College: Southern Cal

2015 with the Cowboys: Smith had yet another Pro Bowl season – his third straight – and earned some All-Pro recognition for the second straight year.

What's the Deal: The left tackle might not be the most experienced, or certainly the most vocal among the Cowboys' celebrated offensive line, but Smith could be the most talented.

He steadily protects the blind side of the Cowboys' quarterback and rarely has problems with the top pass rushers in the NFL.

Smith is also an underrated run blocker that has helped the Cowboys establish runners such as DeMarco Murray, who led the NFL in rushing in 2014, and then Darren McFadden, who finished fourth in the league last year despite limited starts.

Expect This: Smith will get the best pass-rusher every opponent has week in and week out. Last year, the only game he really struggled was against Miami, where Olivier Vernon had two sacks on him. Now, Vernon has joined the Giants in free agency and will face Smith twice in 2016.

Bryan Broaddus Scouting Report:

  • One of the most respected players on the squad. Quiet leader of this team. More qualities through his actions than what he says verbally. One of the hardest workers on and off the field.
  • Doesn't appear to get worn down or take plays off. Outstanding playing strength and playing speed. Flexibility is off the charts. Can bend and adjust to any type of defender.
  • Really excels when he has to fight a rusher with his hands. Can put himself in position with his footwork, then his hands and strength takes over. Strong hands. Can easily control his man. Has the ability to dominate an opponent with his upper and lower body power. Able to get movement at the point of attack. Can finish.
  •  Improved on his awareness and football intelligence. Didn't see as many breakdowns in protection as we did in 2014. Had a better feel with what was going on around him. Was worried that he was going to struggle once the coaches made the switch from Ronald Leary to La'el Collins but did not appear to be an issue.
  • Believe he is a much better front side player than on the back. There are snaps where he is not able to secure the backside and his man with get in on the play. Can make great things happen when the ball goes behind him.
  • Will be the starting left tackle for years to come. Five years in the league and still one of the youngest players on the squad. Hard to believe that he can improve but there are areas of his game where he surely can improve such as his backside play and second-level blocks.

The writers of DallasCowboys.com have ranked the Top 50 players expected to be on the field this season, including the Cowboys.

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