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Tyler Smith could remain at LG: It’s starting to feel like Larry Allen all over again

The Cowboys drafted Tyler Smith 24th overall in 2022 as the heir apparent to Tyron Smith at left tackle. Tyron Smith might have played his final game with the Cowboys, and Tyler Smith might remain at left guard.

Cowboys executive vice president Stephen Jones paused the idea of Tyler Smith moving to left tackle if Tyron Smith leaves in free agency.

That remains to be seen,” Jones said from the Scouting Combine, via Calvin Watkins of the Dallas Morning News. “It’s starting to feel like Larry Allen all over again. The great thing about Tyler is his versatility. He could be a great left tackle, too. Larry Allen played one or two years at left tackle, and I think he made All-Pro those years, too. Tyler’s got that in him.”

Allen played all but one position along the offensive line in his 12 seasons in Dallas, moving from right tackle (1994) to right guard (1995-97) to left tackle (1997-98) and finally to left guard (1999-03). The Hall of Famer earned All-Pro and Pro Bowl honors at left tackle in 1998, but his other six All-Pro honors and 10 Pro Bowl accolades came at guard.

Tyler Smith, who spent most of his rookie season at left tackle with Tyron Smith injured, made the Pro Bowl for the first time in 2023.

”At the end of the day, when we’re through massaging it, we’ll have a good spot for him,” Jones said. “The great news is we have Tyler Smith. His versatility certainly brings options to the table as we look at this team moving forward.”

Tyron Smith will hit free agency for the first time. He is one of the most talented players available in free agency, but his injury history makes him a gamble. He hasn’t played a full season since 2015 and has played only 82 of 131 games since.

Tyron Smith, who played 13 games in 2023, wants to remain with the Cowboys and could take another team-friendly deal.

“He missed a few [games] last year,” Jones said. “We’ll certainly be sitting down with him and looking at what it looks like for him to stay here.”

Eight offensive tackles could go in the first round in April, so the Cowboys could use the 24th overall selection on one.