SI.com's draft analyst Tony Pauline reported yesterday about the USC Pro Day. One of the more interesting aspects of his report is that it appears both Cowboys head coach Jason Garrett and offensive line coach (and running game coordinator) Hudson Houck attended the workout, and it does not take a rocket scientist to figure out that they were there to take a close look at offensive tackle Tyron Smith. It's the only Pro Day that Garrett has attended so far.
It's probably safe to assume that they came away suitably impressed. Here's Pauline's summary of Smith's workout:
Tyron Smith turned in some terrific marks at USC's pro-day. Tipping the scales at 310 pounds, three more than his combine weight, Smith ran 40 times which ranged in the mid-to-upper 4.9-second area. Some clocks had the big offensive tackle as fast as 4.92. Those marks were far superior to any offensive tackle that ran in Indianapolis.
His 30-inch vertical jump and 9-foot, 2-inch broad jump also rank in the upper echelon of marks from the offensive tackle class at the combine. Smith improved his bench press by completing 31 reps, up two from the combine. Sources said he looked terrific in position drills, displaying good movement skills and solid footwork.
With his performance, Smith further solidified his position as a top pick in the 2011 draft, and accordingly has received an invitation from the league to attend the draft in New York on April 28 - which Smith plans to attend.
Over the last few weeks, Smith has increasingly been linked to the Cowboys, and the fact that Garrett and Houck both attended the workout not only lends credence to these speculations, but more importantly for many Cowboys fans, it shows that the Cowboys are serious about finally fixing their offensive line.
But did Garrett and Houck see a future left tackle or did they see a right tackle?
Bucky Brooks from NFL.com was also at the USC Pro Day and was very complimentary about what he saw from Smith, but did not see a future left tackle.
Smith also displayed good footwork and agility in pass-blocking drills. He shadowed movement well and has the quickness to react to sudden movements. Although his quickness and agility rate well, Smith doesn’t appear to have the natural ability that teams covet in a left tackle.
Smith showed outstanding strength and power in run drills. He explodes into defenders upon contact and forcefully moves them off the ball. His natural power and explosiveness were his most impressive attributes, and he has the potential to be a dominant force as a run blocker.
Overall, Smith solidified his status as a top talent. But he should be considered as a right tackle for most offenses.
All signs point to Smith being the leading candidate for the Cowboys at this point, but whether he'll end up with a star on his helmet will depend on what Garrett and Houck saw at the USC Pro Day yesterday. Left tackle or right tackle?