Jets To Manage LT Tyron Smith’s Training Camp Workload

Entering the offseason, questions were in place regarding how the Jets would proceed along the offensive line. Both tackle spots have seen veteran additions, although in the case of Tyron Smith and Morgan Moses injuries remain a concern.

Smith established himself as one of the league’s top blindside protectors over the course of his 13-year Cowboys tenure. That period was frequently marred by injuries, however, and the 2010s All-Decade team member last played more than 13 games in a season in 2015. Smith inked a one-year, incentive-laden Jets deal in March.

The 33-year-old is on track to serve as New York’s left tackle starter, an important position considering quarterback Aaron Rodgers is coming off an Achilles tear which sidelined him for essentially his entire debut season with the Jets. Smith’s workload during training camp will be an important factor in his ability to acclimate to his new team. To little surprise, though, the Jets will proceed with caution in his case.

New York will include several rest days in Smith’s practice schedule this summer, Zack Rosenblatt of The Athletic notes (subscription required). The eight-time Pro Bowler has missed 37 games across the past four years, appearing in just two contests in 2020 and four in 2022. Remaining healthy would be a critical development for team and player, although the Jets did use their top pick in this year’s draft on tackle Olu Fashanu as a future left tackle starter capable of seeing time as a rookie if needed.

Smith – who had discussions with the Cowboys about a new deal but did not come close on financial terms – will of course help his free agent value with a strong season. A key first step in that regard will be remaining on the field for most of the 2024 campaign, and a training camp regimen aimed at preserving him would mirror the approach Dallas used last year while increasing his chances of being effective down the stretch.

As Rosenblatt notes, Moses (re-acquired to handle right tackle duties) did not practice this spring as he recovers from pectoral surgery. Guard Alijah Vera-Tucker meanwhile, is rehabbing from an Achilles tear although there is optimism he will be ready for the start of the season. There will likely be few practices this summer where all five projected Jets O-line starters are on the field at the same time, but in Smith’s case at least that will be by choice.

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