Dallas Cowboys offensive line will be the difference in San Francisco

(Photo by Courtney Culbreath/Getty Images)
(Photo by Courtney Culbreath/Getty Images) /
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"Rookie Offensive Lineman, Tyler Smith."

In 2022 NFL Draft, the Dallas Cowboys chose to re-commit draft capital to the offensive line. Over the last few weeks of the season, that investment began pointing upwards and the team is prepared to cash in their dividends this playoff.

According to Pro Football Focus, Tyler has allowed six sacks during the 2022 season. Let’s add some context around that statistic. This is a rookie from a small program in Tulsa, Oklahoma who was assigned to play the left tackle position without practicing the position in training camp.

Many will point to his holding calls and that is very much a valid concern. From a penalty standpoint, he stands on that mountain all by himself as the most penalized offensive lineman with 13 penalties according to PFF. However, the Dallas Cowboys would point to that nastiness and power that was on display against the Minnesota Vikings.

That is the type of strength that’s going to play to the Cowboys’ favor if they consistently run the ball against the San Francisco 49ers. Nick Bosa, Sam Ebukam, and Drake Jackson are ‘pin your ears back’ type of pass rushers.

That’s not to say they do not play the run well. But their preference would be to use their athleticism to beat Tyler off the line. Their average weight runs about 261 pounds in comparison to Tyler’s 332 pounds. If this game stays on the ground, Dallas should feel confident about running behind their young rookie left tackle.