Cowboys begin negotiations with Tyron Smith

July, 27, 2011
7/27/11
1:21
PM ET



SAN ANTONIO -- The Cowboys have opened up contract talks with their first-round pick, tackle Tyron Smith.

Talks have progressed so well that Smith is scheduled to catch a flight this afternoon so he can be here to participate in training camp practices, which start Thursday, in case a deal is completed.

Players had to report to camp by 11 a.m. today, attend some meetings and pass conditioning drills.

Smith, the ninth overall pick of the draft, is projected to play right tackle this season.

While he's expected to, it's uncertain if Smith will start. The team is also trying to rework the contract of last year's starting right tackle, Marc Colombo. If Colombo does not restructure his deal, sources say he will be released.

The Cowboys have a first-year rookie pool fund of $5.7 million to use.
Calvin Watkins joined ESPNDallas.com in September 2009. He's covered the Cowboys since 2006 and also has covered colleges, boxing and high school sports.

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