5 takeaways from the Cowboys’ upset win over the Bengals in Week 2
3. Tyler Smith is looking like the right pick at No. 24
After a surprisingly solid performance in Week 1, first-round pick Tyler Smith looked even better in Week 2, and man is that exciting. If you didn’t know, quite a few people were not fond of this pick by the Cowboys. However, Smith is proving them wrong with how he’s played so far this season.
Not only is No. 73 looking like the right pick at 24, but he’s also looking like a steal. In two games, he’s allowed just three pressures, one sack, one QB hit, one hurry, and committed only one penalty at the position they weren’t necessarily planning on playing him at this early. On Sunday, he allowed only one pressure and one quarterback hit. That’s it.
The most impressive part about the first-rounder is that he’s not only doing this against NFL talent, but against some of the best talent this league has to offer. He’s lined up against Trey Hendrickson and Shaq Barrett this season, both of whom were Pro Bowlers last year.
For context, Smith was the fifth tackle taken in the 2022 draft. While one of those, Trevor Penning, hasn’t played this season, the rest have played over 100 snaps. We can remove Evan Neal from this context only because he’s been playing right tackle this season, so I want to be as objective as possible when I throw these numbers at you.
Out of Smith, Ikem Ekwonu (sixth overall pick), and Charles Cross (ninth overall pick), Smith has allowed the least amount of sacks and pressures out of the three while playing 19 more snaps than the next highest. According to PFF, he also grades out as the best blocker out of the three in both the run game and the passing game.