You don’t see it often. But Tyron Smith was on the ground, play over, with DeMarcus Ware somewhere past him.
The Cowboys’ second-year left tackle had been overpowered by one of the game’s premier pass rushers.
Ware was not taking it easy on Smith as he tries to learn his new position at left tackle.
But that’s ok with Smith.
“I don’t want him to,” he said.
He and Ware had a competitive practice Saturday. Sometimes Smith hung in there. Sometimes he didn’t. But he didn’t lose confidence. He knows who he is facing.
“No, I just get a little frustrated,” Smith said. “It just basically lets me know what I’ve got to clean up.”
Offensive line coach Bill Callahan said he likes the poise Smith, who played right tackle as a rookie, is showing in his battles with Ware, who had 19 1/2 sacks for the Cowboys last year.
“You can’t say enough about his poise and his temperament,” Callahan said. “He’s even-keeled, but he’s highly competitive. He doesn’t want to get beat. When he wins, he doesn’t get overexuberant. He’s steady. And that’s what I like about him. Good, bad or indifferent, he’s the same guy. You can count on that, day in and day out. You like that from a coach’s standpoint.”
Smith said Ware is not holding secrets from him. They have helped each other work on their techniques.
“Since he knows I feel comfortable, know more what I’m doing now, we can kind of help each other out,” Smith said. “He teaches me how to beat his moves, so we’re just competing every time.”
Smith said he has been studying his technique from last year on the right side so he knows what he did to get out of his stance quickly and what footwork he used.
“I feel more comfortable compared to last year,” he said. “I came in, all over the place, not knowing what’s going on. Just having the OTAs and minicamps helped out a lot. Having an offseason program, working with the guys, helped out a lot.”
-- Carlos Mendez