Former Atlanta Falcons right tackle Tyson Clabo was on the free agent market for less than a day when the Dallas Cowboys started knocking on his door, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL Network.
RT Tyson Clabo has already heard from #Cowboys & #Jaguars. No rush for him to sign. Best bet may be after draft for whoever misses at RT— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) April 4, 2013
Clabo, who turns 32 in October, started at right tackle for Atlanta in each of the last six seasons, and even had a Pro Bowl appearance in 2010. Per Stats Inc., Clabo allowed 4.25 sacks in 16 games last season and was called for four penalties. That compares favorably to Doug Free, who allowed 7 sacks and 13 penalties.
Clabo presents an additional option for the Cowboys, who are looking at ways to shore up their right tackle spot. Cincinnati's Andre Smith is on the market, and on DallasCowboys.com's Talking Cowboys, Brian Broaddus said the Cowboys have "serious interest" in Eric Winston as a RT - if the Cowboys don't address the right tackle spot in the draft.
Evan Silva of Rotoworld made an interesting point about the saturated right tackle market yesterday, when he pointed out that Andre Smith was PFF's No. 1-rated right tackle in 2012, Tyson Clabo was No. 5, and Eric Winston was No. 9 - yet all three are still free agents, an indication of how inferior RTs are viewed by NFL teams. Silva also points out that only one right tackle, our own Doug Free, makes more than $7M annually, while 14 left tackles make more.
There doesn't appear to be much of a rush, from the Cowboys or any other team, to acquire any of these tackles. It seems, just like Rapoport and Broaddus are saying, that teams want to see what falls their way in the draft before making any decision.
For the Cowboys, the prudent thing to do is probably to go into the draft and target either a guard or right tackle with one of the top two picks, and then address the other spot via a free agent acquisition after the draft.