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8 Fun Facts About New Jets Free Agent Left Tackle Tyron Smith

Longtime Cowboys Strongman Comes to Green & White with Abilities to Overcome Injury, Stop Enemy Sackers

Dallas Cowboys offensive lineman Tyron Smith (77) lines up for the snap during an NFL football game against the Philadelphia Eagles, Sunday, Dec. 10, 2023, in Arlington, Texas. (AP Photo/Matt Patterson)

Tyron Smith spent his first 13 pro seasons with the Dallas Cowboys, racking up a number of numbers as he became recognized as one of the best left tackles in the NFL with eight Pro Bowl berths and five All-Pro selections. Now he's bringing his considerable talents to the Jets, where he'll get to protect Aaron Rodgers' blind side and open creases if not chasms for RB Breece Hall and company.

Here are eight facts about Smith as he joins the Jets' emerging offensive line picture for the '24 season.

He's No. 1
Smith has been a prominent performer since his high school days in Moreno Valley, CA. In his senior year at Rancho Verde HS, he was considered a five-star recruit and labeled "an amazing right tackle prospect by and was listed as the No. 1 offensive tackle in the nation by In his final season at Southern Cal in 2010, he was named recipient of the Morris Trophy, given to the top offensive lineman in the then-Pac-10 Conference.

Show of Strength
Smith's 225-pound bench press at the 2011 testing period was good but not through the Lucas Oil Stadium roof — 29 reps at the NFL Combine before pumping out 31 at his Southern Cal pro day. But if we're talking about one bench press, Smith has amazed past teammates with lifts of between 600 and 700 pounds. Cowboys C Travis Frederick expressed that wow factor in 2016: "He does crazy things in the weight room that I wish I could do and never will be able to do, unfortunately."

Big Man with Speed
Smith also strode to some impressive times during his predraft testing that helped elevate him to the ninth overall pick of the '11 NFL Draft by Dallas. At 6-5 and 307 (he now checks in regularly at 320), he turned in a 5.08 time in the 40, which he later got down to 4.93 on the handheld stopwatches at his USC pro day. He also sped to a 7.47-second 3-cone drill at his pro day. Interesting that perhaps that number, 7.47, foretold his move 13 years later to the Jets.

More Numerology
Smith has been a 70s kind of guy, and we don't mean the Decade of Disco. Tyron wore No. 70 in his three seasons at Southern Cal. And he was No. 77 for all 13 of his Cowboys seasons. "Hopefully I can still wear 77 here," Smith told's Caroline Hendershot this week, "and we'll see what happens." Can it be coincidence that Smith and his fiancée are pictured on his Instagram page celebrating the birthday of their son, Seven?

No Longer Foes
Smith's first regular-season game and start for the Cowboys came on the road, on Sunday Night Football, against ... the Jets. It was the Sept. 11, 2011, season opener at MetLife Stadium in which he got the start at right tackle in the 'Pokes' fall-from-ahead 27-24 loss to the Jets on the 10th anniversary of the 2001 terrorist attacks. "I ain't going to lie — it was chaotic," he said of his memories of that game. "I was still trying to get my bearings and figure out a lot of things. But it was a great experience."

Oh, the Pain
Injuries have been a major element of Smith's story the past eight seasons. From 2011-15, he played and started in 81 regular-season and playoff games for Dallas, missing only one game in that span. From 2016 through last season, injuries to a variety of body parts such as his knee, back, groin, hip, neck, hamstring and ankle have led to him missing at least three games in each of those eight seasons and limited him to two games in 2020 and four games in '22.

Sack Stopper Extraordinaire
On the other hand, in those same two periods of his career, he went from being a Pro Bowl-quality sack stopper to getting even better when he didn't play in quite as many games. According to, from 2011-15 he allowed 29 sacks on 5,152 offensive snaps, or one sack allowed every 178 snaps. From 2016-23, he had more snaps (5,833) but gave up half as many sacks (14.5), which figures out to one sack allowed every 402 snaps. Good news, no doubt, for Rodgers and the QB room. "I know what kind of player he is," Smith said of Rodgers. "I know he can do great things if you give him time."

Lot of Dog in Him
We've seen no recent reports of Smith's canine friends, but in 2014 he and his then-girlfriend liked to chill at his North Dallas home with their pups. ESPN reported at the time that the couple had five dogs, which included a 110-pound French mastiff named Beast.

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