There’s an old saying that you should give people their flowers while they’re here and not, well, you know.
That’s exactly what Pittsburgh Steelers inside linebacker Ryan Shazier did.
Shazier gave Dallas Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott some love then presented offensive tackle Tyron Smith a huge bouquet, figuratively speaking, in a new piece for The Players Tribune titled, “5 Toughest Guys I’ve Ever Faced.”
Smith… and the entire Cowboys offensive line were feted for being “in-sync” and moving “in unison.”
“Ezekiel Elliott is a beast. He ran all over us last season. But I can’t mention him without mentioning the guys in front of him, because they’re flat-out amazing. Tyron Smith is a freaking Sasquatch out there playing football. He’s huge and he’s super quick, and when he gets his hands on you, forget it. It’s like they’re glued to you. You’re not getting out of his grasp. In my opinion, he’s the best tackle in the game.”
— The Players' Tribune (@PlayersTribune) July 20, 2017
Shazier continued with the roses: “But with Dallas, it’s really about the whole group. They have the most in-sync offensive line I’ve seen in the league. They move in unison, and they’re all in the perfect technique on every play, even in the pre-snap.”
Nice flowers.. WORDS.. from an opponent.
Although he played through injuries at times, Smith’s dominance on the field helped the Cowboys to a 13-3 record and was a key factor in Elliott’s NFL league leading rusher title.
In reward, Smith was named, for the second time in his career, the first team left tackle for the 2016 All-Pro Team. He was named to his fourth consecutive Pro Bowl and was named First-team All-Pro, both honors being shared with fellow Cowboy offensive linemen Travis Frederick and Zack Martin.
Smith was also voted the 18th-best player in the NFL by his peers on ESPN’s “Top 100 Players of 2017” lists.
No. 77 is poised for another stellar season and, with training camp only days away, it doesn’t hurt to have some fresh flowers in the form of words of praise from an opponent on hand.