Andre Smith quietly turning career around

AP

It feels like Andre Smith has been a punchline in Cincinnati for a long time.

It’s worth remembering the third-year pro is only 24 years old. He’s quietly started to live up to his potential this season as the Bengals’ starting right tackle.

“Not to be in the spotlight has been pretty fine for myself and my family. We’ve been embracing it,” Smith told Joe Reedy of the Cincinnati Enquirer. “I can get better.”

Smith has allowed two sacks and five pressures this year. He’s generally looked like an above average starter.

Just staying on the field is a big step for Smith.  He only played in five games in his first two years since being the No. 6 overall pick of the 2009 draft. Smith will start his sixth straight game on Sunday against his biggest test yet: Robert Mathis of the Colts.

For Smith, becoming a forgotten man is a good thing.

“I think that’s a good thing if you haven’t had a whole lot to talk about,” teammate Andrew Whitworth said. “Usually tackles don’t get talked about unless it’s in a bad way.”

15 responses to “Andre Smith quietly turning career around

  1. I may be wrong, but didn’t this guy have a fairly long holdout when he was drafted? You tend to invite attention when you do that & you can’t play the position they drafted you for (LT). No one to blame but himself.

  2. Three words: Ray “Rock” Oliver.
    When I read that Smith had been working-out with Oliver during the lockout, I knew he’d turned the proverbial corner.

  3. You don’t draft an “above average” right tackle with the 6th overall pick.

    Wouldn’t exactly call that living up to his potential.

  4. “Gordon says: Oct 14, 2011 12:41 PM

    I may be wrong, but didn’t this guy have a fairly long holdout when he was drafted? You tend to invite attention when you do that & you can’t play the position they drafted you for (LT). No one to blame but himself.”

    To add to it, it was during the offseason that the Bengals were on “Hard Knocks”.

  5. Andre had to replace “Big” Willie Anderson which is some “Big” shoes to fill. Willie was really well liked in the locker room. Then Andre comes in and was over weight and out of shape. I believe he got injured as well? (I might be wrong there).

    Anyway, let’s see, year 4 of probably a 5 year contract puts him on schedule for a contract holdout next year. Sounds about right.

  6. @Gordon Why would the Bengals draft Andre Smith to play LT when they have one of the best LT’s in the league, Andrew Whitworth? Andre is playing exactly where they wanted him to.

  7. @Gordon

    The Bengals already employed Andrew Whitworth who plays at top 5 LT level so Smith wasn’t specifically drafted to play there.

    Since old hand & OL veteran leader Bobbie Williams just returned from a 4-game diuretic suspension to resume his RG position next to Smith & keep him straight with the gameplans expect him to continue to quietly improve & My Precious Tissue Paper Tigers to roadgrade now to the strongside …

    Now maybe rookie Clint Boling switching primary focus back to his more natural RG and/or vet Mike McGlynn (both of whom successively filled in perhaps not so stellarly for Williams) can upgrade the suspect play at LG now as well?

  8. Ooops, meant to imply Boling/McGlynn would focus more toward improving Boling’s more natural LEFT G pedigree … McGlynn’s probably the #1 utility guy on the line right now.

  9. I still can’t get that horrible image out of my mind of him running the 40 with his shirt off. Need Bleach now!

  10. Glad to see the kid finally gets it. Kinda figured it would happen once the Bengals decided to cut the last 2 years off his contract. He’s made a big difference so far this year.

    -QG

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