The Cowboys came to terms with first-round pick Tyler Smith on his four-year rookie contract Friday and are putting him to work at a new position, Ed Werder of ESPN.com tweets.
Smith lined up at left guard at Dallas’ rookie minicamp Friday, marking the first time he has played the guard position since his senior year of high school, Clarence Hill of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram relays. The Tulsa product played exclusively at left tackle in college.
Tackle-to-guard transitions are common in the NFL; Zack Martin made the move as a rookie in 2014. Like Smith, Martin did not make any starts at guard in college. The Cowboys are still planning on a Tyron Smith-to-Tyler Smith transition at left tackle someday, with Hill noting the younger Smith will receive left tackle reps this offseason. But for now, the first-rounder will vie to line up next to the perennial Pro Bowler up front.
The Cowboys let previous left guard Connor Williams defect to the Dolphins in free agency, pitting Tyler Smith against Connor McGovern. While Smith could make sense at right tackle, the Cowboys are high on frequent starter Terence Steele to take over for La’el Collins full-time at that spot.
Smith, who goes 6-foot-4 and 324 pounds, was the Golden Hurricane’s full-time starter at left tackle in 2020 and ’21. As the No. 24 overall pick, Smith will be tied to a fully guaranteed deal worth $13.38MM, Michael Gehlken of the Dallas Morning News tweets. The Cowboys can keep Smith on that rookie contract through 2026, via the fifth-year option.
The Cowboys also signed fifth-round offensive lineman Matt Waletzko (North Dakota State), fifth-round cornerback DaRon Bland (Fresno State), fifth-round linebacker Damone Clark (LSU) and sixth-round linebacker Devin Harper (Oklahoma State)on Friday, The Athletic’s Jon Machota tweets.