Andre Smith: veteran help for an offensive line in transition?
Plan B: Mr. Smith visits Cincinnati. Again.
With nose tackle Domata Peko signing for nearly $4 million per year in Denver and running back Rex Burkhead seemingly on the verge of going elsewhere, the Bengals are entertaining the idea of courting unrestricted free agents.
One of them is old friend Andre Smith, who is just what the doctor ordered on a re-shuffled offensive line. Smith, 30, the club's first-round pick from 2009 who anchored right tackle for six post-season runs, visits Tuesday and would be a very nice veteran get as they wait and see if 2015 second-round pick Jake Fisher is ready for the job.
The word is Smith would like to return after a one-year hiatus in Minnesota got curtailed by injury.
There is also a report that Giants linebacker Keenan Robinson, who played for Bengals linebackers coach Jim Haslett for four seasons in Washington, is also visiting. Robinson can play all over and in his one-year deal in New York he played every game and started the play-off loss to Green Bay.
The Bengals want to make sure they get a third-round compensatory pick for Kevin Zeitler's deal in Cleveland and a compensatory fifth for Andrew Whitworth's deal in Los Angeles. Now with Peko, Burkhead, and Karlos Dansby already signing or about to sign deals worthy of picks, the Bengals have some room to maneuver on the unrestricted market.
The Bengals weren't counting on retaining fifth-year defensive end Margus Hunt and they didn't. NFL Network reported Monday night he's going to the Colts on a two-year deal. The Bengals have appeared to be intent on drafting an end to join starters Carlos Dunlap and Michael Johnson as well as backup Will Clarke. They could also re-sign Wallace Gilberry.
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