Andre Smith met with the Bengals' front office on Tuesday, but little is known whether the talks went well or not, according to The Cincinnati Enquirer's Joe Reedy.
There were talks between the #bengals and Smith today, but haven't heard how they've gone which could be good or bad or indifferent— Joe Reedy (@joereedy) March 12, 2013
After placing the franchise tag on defensive end Michael Johnson, Andre Smith became the biggest free agent for the team to re-sign. As far as we know, this is the first time the two sides have met. Smith reportedly wants a contract in the vicinity of $9 million per year, and even though the Bengals have the most space under the salary cap in the league, they may be unwilling to pay that much for their right tackle.
The new league year officially began on Tuesday at 4 p.m. EST and Smith is free to sign with any other team in the league as of now. Re-signing him would go a long way for the Bengals so they can worry about the holes that they needed to fill before last season. Losing Smith would create a new hole that would need to be filled with either a free agent or a high draft pick.
Smith finished the 2012 season as the best overall offensive lineman on the team, as he proved to be a powerful run blocker as well as a talented pass protector. Good tackles are tough to find in the NFL and Smith is certainly a good one.