The Bengals have placed tackle Andre Smith on injured reserve. In related moves, the Bengals signed fellow tackle Justin Murray off the Saints practice squad. They also signed linebacker Connor Harris to the taxi squad.
Smith, who spent the first seven seasons of his career with Cincinnati after being selected No. 6 overall in the 2009 draft, reunited with the Bengals in the offseason. He signed a one-year deal with the notion that he would be the team’s starting right guard. He lost that competition to Trey Hopkins, but a spot opened up at right tackle when Jake Fisher was shut down for the year with a heart condition.
Even at his native tackle position, Smith didn’t really deliver. Pro Football Focus rates him as just the No. 64 tackle in the league out of 85 qualified players. Smith hasn’t earned a quality score from PFF since 2014, a sign that he has declined in recent years.
The soon-to-be 31-year-old will be eligible for unrestricted free agency in January. He’s lost a step or three, but his experience and versatility could allow him to find work in 2018.
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