Aaron Rodgers praising Tyron Smith is Cowboys fans' worst nightmare

Philadelphia Eagles v Dallas Cowboys
Philadelphia Eagles v Dallas Cowboys / Cooper Neill/GettyImages

The Dallas Cowboys drafted Oklahoma tackle Tyler Guyton with the No. 29 overall pick. A right tackle for the Sooners, Guyton is expected to switch to the left side and protect Dak Prescott's blindside. Of course, the selection of Guyton was made necessary after the Cowboys opted to not re-sign Tyron Smith.

It always felt like Smith would be back in Dallas. Smith had previously expressed a desire to be a lifetime Cowboy, but it became evident during the NFL Combine that the front office wasn't prepared to offer him a befitting contract.

Perhaps the Cowboys thought the juice wasn't worth the squeeze anymore with Smith. As outstanding as he is when healthy, Smith has played 30 of a possible 56 games over the last four seasons. Despite that, fans were up in arms after Smith inked an incentive-laden contract with the Jets.

Smith is now tasked with protecting Cowboys nemesis Aaron Rodgers' blindside. It's arguably the worse-case scenario other than Smith landing with the Eagles or another NFC East rival. To rub salt in a very fresh wound, Rodgers heaped praise on Smith this week at Jets OTAs.

Aaron Rodgers praising Tyron Smith is Cowboys fans' worst nightmare

"It’s great having him next to me in the locker room. I’ve been a fan of his for a long time. He’s a Hall of Fame player. He’s a specimen. He’s a big, strong man. Not a fat man, either. Tyron is pretty chiseled. Just having his leadership. The coolest thing for me is I have a front row seat. Today I got back to my locker and there was (Jets first-round pick) Olu Fashanu picking Tyron's brain, so it's pretty cool. "

Jets QB Aaron Rodgers

That is an absolute gut punch for Cowboys fans. If it's any silver lining, it had to be expected, no? Smith is a consummate professional on top of being one of the best left tackles of his generation. Of course he's leading by example and taking the Jets' young offensive linemen under his wing.

On the field, Smith is already turning heads at OTAs. According to Jets beat reporter Zack Rosenblatt of The Athletic, the eight-time Pro Bowler is "stonewalling" New York's pass rushers. Say what you will about it only being OTAs, but the Jets' edge rusher room is among the best in the league.

Smith wowing the New York media with his blocking expertise is going to be a theme of the offseason. The Jets haven't had a LT of Smith's prestige in years. While Guyton has immense upside, Cowboys fans will be keeping close tabs on Gang Green to see if letting Smith leave was the right decision.

After all, the Cowboys had finally come up with a practice routine to keep Smith upright. His 13 games played last season were his most in five (!) years. The results spoke for themselves. Smith's 88.4 pass-blocking grade was first among tackles and he allowed the second-fewest sacks (one), QB hits (one) and pressures (18), per Pro Football Focus (subscription required).

Time will tell if it was right to part with Smith, but you can count on Rodgers to twist the proverbial knife every chance he gets.

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