Offensive tackle fined for horse-collar play

IRVING – It is, in a sense, the best $15,750 that Dallas Cowboys offensive tackle Tyron Smith will ever spend. Sources tell 105.3 The Fan in Dallas, the NFL has ordered the 21-year-old budding standout to pay for his horse-collar of the Giants’ Michael Boley – part of a game-turning tackle of Boley following his interception. Smith’s tackle was followed by his defensive teammates’ goal-line stand, a highlight of Dallas’ 24-17 win at New York.

“It was a really big play in the game,” Cowboys coach Jason Garrett said last week. “As coaches, we always try to emphasize the ball, and the importance of the ball. …One of the things we talk about is when there is a turnover, going to get the ball back, going to make the tackle if there is an interception or the other team is running with the football. You can preach that until you’re blue in the face, but until that situation happens in the game, it’s hard to know if guys are going to respond the right way.”

Smith responded the right way and his horsecollar was an accident. But the league is apparently not taking that into consideration, as the $15,750 is larger than the “standard” $7,500 and just shy of the apparent maximum fine amount of $21,000.

Garrett credited Smith effort as being a turning point, noting his lineman’s “hustle, his determination, his will.” It was, essentially, a “four-point play” – and now a $15,750 one as well.